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Spurs boss lashes out at ´hypocrite´ Fergie

SoccerNews in English Premier League 18 Jul 2008

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Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy on Friday described the conduct of Manchester United and Liverpool as “disgraceful” in their respective pursuits of Dimitar Berbatov and Robbie Keane.

A furious Levy claimed his Premier League rivals have been “systematically been working to prise the players away from us”.

United boss Ferguson confirmed earlier Friday that United, who have been infuriated by Real Madrid's public pursuit of Cristiano Ronaldo this summer, have made a bid for Berbatov and that he eventually expects the deal to go through.

Spurs have also been angered by the comments of Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez, who went public last week by revealing Republic of Ireland captain Keane as a target for the Reds.

Levy issued the following lengthy statement on his club's official website, www.tottenhamhotspur.com: “Today's public comments by Manchester United's manager, announcing that he has made an offer for Dimitar and is confident that the deal will go through with time working in their favour, is a blatant example of sheer arrogance and interference with one of our players.

“It is also probably one of the worst offences by any manager in the Premier League to date and is unbelievably hypocritical given his recent comments in respect of Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid.

“This comes after a series of events, dating back to last summer, which have shown Manchester United to be in breach of Premier League rules.

“As a result, we have today made an official complaint to the Premier League about the conduct of Manchester United.

“Benitez made similar comments in respect of Robbie recently and we made an official complaint to the Premier League about the conduct of Liverpool earlier this week.

“The behaviour of both clubs has been disgraceful. We told both clubs very early on that we had no interest in selling Robbie or Dimitar, respectively, and that they should refrain from pursuing the player.

“Both clubs arrogantly chose to ignore this request and we now have evidence that both clubs have systematically been working to prise the players away from us, outside of Premier League rules of conduct.

“Our subsequent position has been severely compromised by both clubs making their intentions widely known and indeed making contact with the players and their agents, without the club's permission.”

Benitez and Spurs have clashed before, in March 2006, when the Liverpool boss claimed Spurs were “desperate” to sell Jermain Defoe and take Djibril Cisse.

Later Friday, United responded to Tottenham's claims.

A spokesman said: “We are aware of the allegation and will co-operate with the Premier League as necessary.”

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