Redknapp: We want to keep Modric
Published 11/07/2011 | 19:22
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has reiterated his desire to keep hold of star playmaker Luka Modric amid claims that Chelsea are ready to raise their offer for the Croatian.
Reports on Monday suggested that Chelsea are set to increase the initial £22million they bid for Croatian Modric, who launched a stinging attack on Spurs chairman Daniel Levy on Saturday. But Redknapp told Sky Sports News: "I've not heard anything.
"They (Chelsea) are going to make an improved offer? I should think they would need to! £22million for Luka Modric would be a joke anyway if he was for sale. He's a fantastic footballer. The offer is a joke in terms of how much money they have offered. Most importantly we need to keep him, he's a fantastic player for us."
Tottenham fans rejoiced last week when Levy emerged from showdown talks with Modric to insist the midfielder understood he would not be sold this summer despite Chelsea's interest.
Their joy proved to be short-lived however, as Modric gave an interview to a Croatian newspaper on Saturday in which he stated his desire to complete a "dream" move to the Blues.
What hurt the club most was the 25-year-old's personal attack on Levy, who Modric accused of being "arrogant" and reneging on a previous agreement to allow the player to leave if a bigger club came in for him this summer.
Modric also claimed that new Blues boss Andre Villas-Boas was interested in signing him, prompting speculation that Chelsea would return with a higher offer than was lodged when the club did not have a manager last month.
Redknapp admits having Levy and Modric come to loggerheads in such a public fashion has left him in a "difficult situation", but he is still determined to hold on to the player.
"It's up to the chairman, he makes those decisions," Redknapp said. "I certainly wouldn't want to lose him but it's a difficult situation. He's a fantastic boy, a great player, and 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. But I'm desperate to keep him because, as I say, he's so good."
Modric was in training on Monday as normal ahead of Spurs' pre-season tour to South Africa. The club still expect the former Dinamo Zagreb player to board the plane for the three-match tour when it leaves on Wednesday and Redknapp has not chosen to punish him for his outburst.