Wednesday, 29 October 2008

New Portsmouth Boss Adams Vows To Fight To Keep Players

Tony Adams has been quick to warn off any suitors for his Portsmouth squad in January, with the former Arsenal legend revealing that he will resist any move for his top players, with former Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp now at Tottenham Hotspur linked with Jermain Defoe, Peter Crouch and Lassana Diarra, who is also a target for Manchester City.

Adams took over from Redknapp at Fratton Park on Tuesday after Redknapp’s decision to take the job at White Hart Lane on Sunday. The former England International has signed a two-and-a-half year deal at Fratton Park and is adamant that Portsmouth will fight to keep the likes of Defoe and Crouch, despite recent comments by Redknapp that Pompey would be forced to sell players in January.

Adams told the News: “I will fight him to keep my good players. That is why they're here - they are very good players.

“Harry will probably want them but so will a lot of other managers.

“I'm delighted that we have players who other managers want but I suppose it's my job to keep them here and get them to play for me and that's what I will try to do. At the moment, they are responding to me well.

“It might not work and they might not like me but at the moment we're all right.”

However, any return to Spurs for Defoe, who has played under Redknapp at West Ham as well as Portsmouth would have to wait until the summer, with Premier League rule L19 preventing any player from rejoining a club within 12 months. Diarra and Crouch on the other hand are expected to be targeted by Redknapp, with Tottenham short of options upfront and lacking a midfield general like former Chelsea player Diarra since the departure of Michael Carrick to Manchester United in 2006.

Redknapp will face competition from City for Diarra, with manager Mark Hughes reportedly interested in bringing French International midfielder to the Eastlands Stadium.

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