Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Tottenham Close in on Under-21 Star Alnwick

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Tottenham Close in on Under-21 Star Alnwick

Article excerpt

Byline: SIMON JOHNSON

TOTTENHAM are set to clinch the signing of England Under-21 international keeper Ben Alnwick from Sunderland for [pounds sterling]1m.

The 19-year-old is expected to complete his move to White Hart Lane when the transfer window opens in January. Marton Fulop, who joined Sunderland on loan last week, will make the switch permanent as part of the deal.

Alnwick has represented England at all youth levels and is understood to be keen to join Spurs for the opportunity to work with Paul Robinson, who is first choice with the full national team.

Sunderland manager Roy Keane has confirmed Alnwick wants to leave the club, having lost his place recently to the more experienced Darren Ward.

He said: "Ben has been frustrated at not playing first-team football recently. He has been to see me a few times, so it appears he'll be on his way.

"It looks as though it's a done deal, but you never say for certain in this business because there's always something that can go wrong.

"Marton joined us on loan until January, but we definitely want to take him on fulltime. He's a young keeper who is hungry and ambitious to do well and he's exactly the sort of player that we want here."

A Tottenham spokesman confirmed that 'the club are still in discussions' with Sunderland, but with Alnwick having set his heart on joining Spurs, it is unlikely the deal will fall through.

While Alnwick, who was compared to Robinson at Sunderland, is obviously set to continue his role on the bench at Tottenham, he believes he can develop his game quicker in north London rather than the north east.

The transfer provides more evidence of Tottenham's commitment to signing young English talent, having acquired stars like Jermaine Jenas, Aaron Lennon, Michael Dawson, Tom Huddlestone and Robinson in the last two years. …

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