As Chelsea continue to pursue Tottenham Hotspur playmaker Luka Modric, Spurs manager Harry Redknapp has joined his chairman Daniel Levy in his determination to keep the Croatian at White Hart Lane, despite the player’s public declaration of his wish to move across London to Stamford Bridge. While Levy simply maintains the player is not for sale, Redknapp has stated that it is most important that Spurs prove they can match the kind of ambition that threatens to lure the diminutive Croatian to Spurs’ west London rivals.
It is said that Modric’s main reason for wanting to ply his trade elsewhere is the offer of Champions League football. The midfielder was a key figure in the Spurs side that made the quarter-finals, before a disappointing exit at the hands of Real Madrid. For Modric, however, the experience has only fuelled his hunger for European glory, a hunger that cannot be achieved at White Hart Lane next season after Spurs missed out on Champions League qualification to Manchester City. In Chelsea, Modric will see a club with major European ambitions. It has been no secret that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich sees securing the illusive Champions league trophy as the main focus for his club. With qualification for the tournament every year since 2003, Chelsea have now established themselves among Europe’s elite, despite failing to land the famous trophy. The Blues have come close in their last eight campaigns, with five semi-finals, one of which lead to a final appearance in 2008.
As with most high-profile transfers in football, finances are also rumoured to have varied implications on the deal. While Chelsea continue their attempts to tempt Spurs to cash in on their asset, it is believed that the player could also be swayed by a lucrative offer. Although Modric is just a year into a six-year contract, the Spurs board may in time consider renewing the player’s terms in order to compete with those offered elsewhere. However, Redknapp concedes his player will no doubt have been tempted by talk, recently telling Sky Sports News: “It’s not easy when people come along and start offering to double or treble your wages, it must make it very difficult for him and I understand where he’s coming from a little bit.” While money would not appear to be the major factor, Chelsea’s well-publicised wealth could well make the move all the more appealing to the player.
Also a tempter for Modric would be the opportunity to play with the kinds of players that have enhanced their reputation at the highest of levels. While Spurs have certainly developed from the club that sat in the relegation zone when Redknapp took over in 2008, should Modric join Chelsea, he would be part of a collection of midfield talent including Frank Lampard, Michael Essien, Jon Mikel Obi and Ramires. As Redknapp looks to strengthen the Spurs squad, Chelsea’s proposition may prove just too great to resist, and should they continue to increase their bid, Tottenham may be swayed to part with one of their most valuable assets.
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