Sol exit still haunts Spurs
By Alex Livie. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR have admitted that the horror of losing Sol Campbell to bitter rivals Arsenal for nothing still affects them, and they will fight to make sure the same does not happen to Stephen Carr.
England international Campbell stunned White Hart Lane when he walked out on the club for Highbury in the summer of 2001, and the club fear Carr could do the same.
Republic of Ireland international Carr still has two seasons to run on his contract, but he has a host of teams monitoring his situation.
Arsenal and Manchester United are just two of the sides looking at Carr, and Spurs are aware that players can walk away for nothing.
Speaking at the club`s AGM, non-executive director David Buchler said: "We were hit quite hard when Sol Campbell left so we know how things work nowadays.
"We cannot force a player to extend his contract.
"The fans have to accept that we might not win every case, but we will take steps to ensure similar things do not happen in the future."
Spurs director of football admitted that the club would do everything in their power to ward clubs off Carr, and hope to persuade him to stay by continually improving and challenging for honours.
"If anybody wants to take Stephen Carr from us they will not give us prior warning," said Pleat. "They will do it round the back as we saw with Sol Campbell.
"There was a time in the past when we were ready to do business for Sol for £18m, but we could not because the player held all the cards. At that time we had no other assets at the club apart from Stephen Carr.
"But the club have worked incredibly hard and we now have a number of assets who, if needed, could be sold to raise money for the club. However, there is a great spirit at the club at the moment and there is no reason to suggest that anybody wants to leave - apart from Sergei Rebrov."
"The main aim is to keep improving because any player wants to play in a winning environment. We have got a great chance at the moment to bridge the gap to the top three or four teams who have started to move away from everybody else.
"We know that we have to get into the top six and then sustain that and we feel that this squad of players is capable of achieving that objective."