26 July 2012, 01:07
Paris St-Germain ready to bid £40m for Tottenham's Luka Modric
LONDON. July 26. KAZINFORM Luka Modric's desire to force a transfer to Real Madrid has been complicated by interest from Paris St-Germain, who have indicated that they would be prepared to pay Tottenham Hotspur's asking price of £40m.
The Croatia midfielder has no desire to join PSG, despite their big spending and ambitions to build a team to compete in the Champions League, but the French club's willingness to pay the figure that Tottenham have demanded has served to harden the conviction at White Hart Lane to hold out for their price in the stand-off with Madrid.
The Spaniards know they are the preferred choice of Modric, whose behaviour at the end of last week incensed the Tottenham hierarchy and has drawn a public rebuke from the manager, André Villas-Boas, who described it as "not professional".
Modric refused to train last Friday and he further disobeyed orders on Saturday when he failed to report for the flight to Los Angeles, where the club have begun their three-city tour of the United States. Tottenham intend to fine him two weeks' wages, a sum of £80,000.
Modric has now started to train at Spurs Lodge in Essex - he reported on Monday and Tuesday - as he seeks to build his fitness. He stood to be fined further if he had remained away. Modric trained alongside Steven Pienaar, who is expected to move back to Everton on a permanent transfer.
Madrid feel that they can make capital out of Modric's rebellion, even if it has been diluted slightly by his presence back at Spurs Lodge, where the players whom Villas-Boas has not taken to the US continue to train, pending the official move to the club's new training base in Bulls Cross.
Madrid have so far offered a package to Tottenham for Modric that could be worth £31m, if the add-ons are realised. They believe that, if the player no longer wants to represent Tottenham and has instead made it clear that he wants to join them, they ought to be able to haggle the price down. They contend that Modric is no longer of top value to Tottenham, Kazinform has learnt from the Guardian.
Tottenham have little time for Madrid's argument but the attitude of the chairman, Daniel Levy, has changed, in that he is prepared to sell Modric for what he feels is the right price. Last summer he refused categorically to sanction Modric's proposed £40m move to Chelsea, even after he had submitted a transfer request.
But if Madrid do not pay the money, Levy is prepared to keep Modric, who is under contract until 2016. Modric refocused last September after his Chelsea move had been blocked to enjoy an excellent season and Levy would expect the same from him again if a deal cannot be concluded to his satisfaction.
Madrid's assistant coach, Aitor Karanka, has confirmed the club's interest in Modric, telling the Spanish newspaper AS: "Which club would not want a player like him? He is an outstanding footballer and had a great tournament [Euro 2012]. It is clear that he would fit in Madrid."
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