Bale to Barca Not a chance insists Harry… even if Euro dream dies
20:21 GMT, 11 May 2012
Harry Redknapp has denied claims that a 32million deal is in place for Gareth Bale to join Barcelona this summer.
Reports surfaced in Spain on Friday indicating that the Tottenham winger is set to sign a five-year deal to play alongside Lionel Messi, Xavi and Co.
Bale, 22, has long since been on the La Liga giants’ radar and the Catalan club were believed to be stepping up their efforts to sign the Wales star.
Barca bound Spurs winger Gareth Bale is in demand at the Catalan giants
But Redknapp said: ‘I don’t know anything about it, this is the first time anything’s been mentioned to me.
‘I haven’t seen that at all and I
wouldn’t think there is the slightest bit of truth in that, wherever it
has come from.
'Not a chance, I would not have thought,’ he added.
The Spurs manager’s words will help
appease growing fears among supporters that Bale could be allowed to
depart White Hart Lane at the end of the season.
Meanwhile, Redknapp once again reaffirmed his interest in signing Ajax captain Jan Vertonghen this summer.
The Belgium centre back has pleaded with his club to agree a deal with Spurs to pave the way for his move to north London.
But Sportsmail understands that
Arsenal are closely monitoring the 25-year-old’s situation and are
intending to gazump their arch rivals.
Redknapp admitted: ‘Yes, he
(Vertonghen) is a good player. But it’s difficult for me to talk about
him too much because someone might come in and give him more wages and
we’ll lose him.’
And the 65-year-old joked: ‘Actually, he’s rubbish.’
Wanted: Luka Modric has long been linked with a move across London to Chelsea
Redknapp insists there will be
no mass exodus of Tottenham's stars this summer even if they fail to
secure Champions League football.
go into Sunday's season-finale knowing a win over Fulham will secure
them fourth place in the Barclays Premier League.
normal circumstances that would guarantee Redknapp's team a place in
the Champions League, but should Chelsea beat Bayern Munich in the
European Cup final a week on Saturday, Spurs will have to settle for a
place in the Europa League – a competition the Tottenham boss has never
hidden his disdain for.
Redknapp says Bale and other stars like Luka Modric, will remain at White Hart Lane regardless of whether they qualify or not.
'That idea gets a bit over-hyped,' Redknapp said. 'When they [Bale and Modric] came to Tottenham, they weren't in the Champions League. When Luka Modric came here they were nowhere near.
'He didn't come here because they were in the Champions League, he came here because they were a good club, he was on decent money and had a chance to play in the Premier League.
'Are you telling me people aren't going to sign for Chelsea next year if they don't win the Champions League
'Of course they will. If they are paid the right money and get the right contract, they are going to a fantastic club in London.
'They will still go to Chelsea, they will still go to Liverpool because it is a great club and they will still come to Tottenham because it's a great club.'
Spurs fought a ferocious battle with Chelsea last summer to keep hold of Modric despite the Blues submitting a 40million bid for the playmaker.
Redknapp said: 'You have got to keep your best players. If you don't then where are you going You can forget about Champions League football in the future if you sell them and they [Bale and Modric] are two of them.'
There is still a chance that Tottenham can qualify automatically for the Champions League. The Londoners will leapfrog Arsenal in to third if they beat Fulham and the Gunners drop points at West Brom on what promises to be a tense final day of the season.
At one point in January Tottenham were within touching distance of the top of the table, but a terrible run of one win in nine matches saw them slip out of contention for their first title in 51 years.
Out of their hands: Chelsea could ruin Tottenham's Champions League hopes
Despite this, Redknapp insists Spurs' season should be viewed as a success, regardless of whether they make the Champions League or not.
The 65-year-old added: 'If we can finish third it would be great. But if we finish fourth it would still be a great achievement. We would have taken that at the beginning of the season.
'We haven't finished above Chelsea too many times since the Premier League started. We will finish above Liverpool and we will have done that for the past couple of years now.
'Sunday will be a big day. We just have to concentrate on ourselves and get the three points.'
Redknapp admits he has a 'big problem' at left-back for Sunday's game, with Benoit Assou-Ekotto out due to a shoulder injury and back-up Danny Rose missing through suspension.
Scott Parker is also doubt with the Achilles injury that has kept him out of the starting line-up for the last three games.