Monday, June 24, 2019

Berbatov had to go, says Spurs chairman

SoccerNews in English Premier League 3 Sep 2008

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Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy claims he had no option but to sell Dimitar Berbatov to Manchester United on transfer deadline day.

The 27-year-old joined United in a 30.75 million pounds (37.8 million euros) deal after demanding a move to Old Trafford.

Spurs were keen to keep Berbatov if possible but the Bulgaria striker forced their hand as he became a distraction to boss Juande Ramos and the rest of the squad.

When Ramos left Berbatov out of the Spurs squad for two Premier League games because of concerns about his frame of mind, it was clear to Levy there was no way back.

Berbatov’s exit came just two months after Republic of Ireland captain Robbie Keane quit White Hart Lane for Liverpool and Levy admitted there is no point in keeping players against their will.

“The decisions we took to allow the transfers of Berbatov and Keane were made after close discussions with the coaching staff,” Levy told the club’s official website.

“Juande was clear, and I believe correct, in not wishing to embrace any player within the dressing room that had no desire to play for the badge of this club and for his team-mates. Under these circumstances we had no option but to sell these players.”

Levy has also urged the Premier League to review the way they police transfers after agreeing not to pursue a complaint against United for making an illegal approach to Berbatov.

“There are no guarantees in football and this summer we found ourselves having to deal with the unexpected challenge of both our leading goalscorers making it clear they wished to leave the club,” Levy said.

“I have already stated my opinion on the manner in which our players were approached and the nature of the negotiations surrounding Robbie Keane and Dimitar Berbatov.

“Monday’s events were further evidence of the need for the Premier League to review the system.

“I have also previously said that we had no need to sell players on long contracts – this no longer remains practical.”

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