Martinez doubts Callejon deal
Spanish tactician concerned striker beyond Latics' financial reach
Last Updated: April 22, 2010 5:31pm
Callejon: In demand
Roberto Martinez believes Wigan will be priced out of a move for Espanyol striker Jose Callejon but has declared his interest in Hamilton's James McArthur.
"Every time he plays well for Espanyol I know the next morning he is again going to be linked with us"
Roberto Martinez Quotes of the week
Callejon has caught the eye of several clubs in England with Wigan, Blackburn and West Ham all reported to be following the 23-year-old's movements this season.
Despite a record of just four goals in 55 matches, the Spanish Under-21 international looks destined for a crack at the Premier League after confessing he would be willing to leave La Liga.
But Martinez has downplayed the likelihood of Callejon joining Wigan in the summer after revealing he fears the highly-rated forward will be too costly to lure to the DW Stadium.
"He is someone I've admired for a long time, not just now he is at Espanyol, but also previously when he was with Real Madrid B," said Lactics boss, who reckons a fee of around £4.5million would be needed to snare the Spaniard.
"Every time he plays well for Espanyol I know the next morning he is again going to be linked with us.
"But he is a big asset for Espanyol as he can play in a number of positions, and I don't think they will want to lose that sort of player.
"Although the Spanish market is not the most expensive in Europe at the moment, he will probably be too expensive for us."
Another target is Hamilton's 22-year-old midfielder McArthur, who is also known to be attracting the interest of Rangers.
Martinez raided Hamilton last summer for 19-year-old James McCarthy who has been one of the club's success stories this season to such an extent he has already been linked with a move away to a bigger club.
As for McArthur, Martinez said: "He is another player we've been following for a long time.
"We're not a club that can rely on our cheque book to bring players in. We need to be creative.
"We also need to sign the right characters, and to do that you need to follow them for a long, long period, and James has been one of the top performers in the Scottish League this season."