Gill: Tottenham a transfer market ‘nightmare’

Matthew Briggs
Daniel Levy: Tottenham Chairman a late negotiator

Former Manchester United chief David Gill claims Tottenham moneyman Daniel Levy is “a nightmare” to deal with in the transfer market.

Spurs chairman Levy has a reputation as something of a tough negotiator in the transfer window, with the club notorious for completing deals and sales on transfer deadline day in particular.

This summer saw the north London club pursue a move for West Brom striker Saido Berahino, culminating in two bids being rejected within two hours of the deadline.

West Brom rejected both approaches with Spurs reportedly offering just £5million up front for the £25million-rated England Under-21 striker.

Former Man United chief executive Gill has recalled his difficult dealings with the White Hart Lane outfit, describing the last-minute deal for Dimitar Berbatov in 2008 as “a nightmare”.

“I don’t know (why they do it so late). It is very difficult,” Gill told Manchester Evening News. “With Tottenham, I’m not speaking out of turn, and Daniel Levy, he would like to do that.

“In 2008, when we won the Champions League, we decided that we couldn’t rely on Tevez, Rooney and Ronaldo to score all the goals so went for another forward and that was Berbatov. I spoke to Daniel Levy in June that year, made an offer, and it went on for the whole summer.

“It was a nightmare. In the end I felt it affected Spurs because we did the deal in the end, at midnight on deadline day, so Tottenham couldn’t get a replacement in. The way the deal got done was that Daniel needed a striker and asked about Fraizer Campbell. So Alex had to phone up Fraizer and say ‘by the way Fraizer, do me a favour, you’re going to Tottenham now’. And that’s how it happened.

“What I’m saying is that Daniel probably squeezed an extra million pounds out of us, but he probably could have got £29m or so two weeks earlier and allowed time to get a different striker and spend that money wisely.”