Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tottenham Boss Gives Up Jones Chase

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tottenham Boss Gives Up Jones Chase

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Douglas

TOTTENHAM have called off their pursuit of Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones after their offer of pounds 14m was rebuffed by the Black Cats.

Spurs boss Harry Redknapp, whose club were criticised by Ricky Sbragia for what he perceived as attempts to 'unsettle' his players, says that his interest has "ended" after they were told Jones was not for sale. Tottenham were prepared to include England forward Darren Bent, a summer target of former Black Cats boss Roy Keane, in a bid to get Sunderland to soften their stance on one of their star assets, but that has failed to bear fruit.

While Spurs have apparently ended their interest in Jones, Phil Brown - another target of Sbragia's ire - insists that his hopes of signing Sunderland skipper Dean Whitehead are not dead. While Redknapp's comments appear to spell the end of their bid to take Trinidad & Tobago forward Jones to White Hart Lane, it would not be a surprise if they returned with another bid in the summer - or even made an approach before the end of this month if they received any sort of encouragement.

"The chairman made an offer for Kenwyne Jones. They don't want to sell him, so that is the end of that one," said Redknapp.

"There is nothing more you can do. He spoke to (Sunderland chairman) Niall Quinn. But they decided he is not for sale, and that is their decision."

That defeatist attitude is not shared by Hull boss Brown, who accused Sbragia of naivety in his determination to keep hold of his captain.

"If he's not for sale, then he's not for sale, but everyone has a price. If we can get close to their valuation, they might be willing to sell," said Brown.

"It's a simple matter of fact that they have identified their targets and we have identified ours.

"To come out and say that he's not for sale is a bit naive. …

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