Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has reiterated his interest in Joe Cole but admits the club are not close to a deal with the former Chelsea midfielder.
The England international became a free agent at the start of July after his contract expired at Stamford Bridge and he has been linked with Manchester United and AC Milan.
Cole, 28, has said that he still believes his best years are ahead of him and that he is looking for a new manager who 'loves' him after falling out of favour with Chelsea chief Carlo Ancelotti.
Redknapp would seemingly fit the bill of an adoring boss, having repeatedly stated his admiration of the playmaker following their time together at West Ham, and he has previously confirmed that talks have taken place with Cole.
"I signed Joe as an 11-year-old at West Ham and I think he is an outstanding player, good professional, great attitude, top player," the Tottenham manager told Sky Sports News.
But Redknapp recognises that he is facing fierce competition for Cole's signature and is adamant that he does not expect to reach an agreement in the immediate future.
"I would love to have Joe at Tottenham but I think there are lots of teams in for him so we will have to wait and see," he continued.
"We are not close to doing anything with Joe."
Quotes accredited to Redknapp over the weekend indicated that Spurs were interested in Uruguay and Atletico Madrid striker Diego Forlan following his impressive World Cup, although he feared that the 31-year-old's salary would be a stumbling block.
Forlan has since said that he is not interested in a move to White Hart Lane and Redknapp concedes that the ex-Manchester United man is probably beyond the reach of his North London club.
"He is a player we would like," Redknapp said. "But I think he might just be out of our range.
"He has had an outstanding World Cup and there wouldn't be too many players at the World Cup who have done better than Forlan.
"He has scored goals, he has worked hard, he is a top player."
Redknapp, though, is eager to make a couple of adjustments to his squad as he prepares for next season in the UEFA Champions League.
Asked if he was looking to make signings, he said: "If we can find one or two who we feel will make the difference.
"It is difficult when you have got a good squad, as we have, to find people who are better.
"But we are looking and we may come up with one or two before the season starts."