Scott Parker set to stay in claret and blue
Published 23:01 07/07/11 By James Nursey
Aston Villa are ready to make a move for Scott Parker – as Stewart Downing prepares to tell manager Alex McLeish he wants to leave.
Parker had talks with new West Ham boss Sam Allardyce yesterday, with his future yet to be resolved.
Harry Redknapp was red-hot favourite to land Parker, but the Spurs boss is under strict orders to sell before buys and his squad is overloaded with midfielders.
That has alerted several clubs that they may be able to snatch the England midfielder from under Redknapp’s nose.
McLeish is keen to strengthen his midfield and is at the front of the chase to land 30-year-old Parker, who was hoping to have left Upton Park by now.
Arsenal and Liverpool did show tentative interest but in both cases that has now cooled and Villa believe they have a chance of landing Parker.
Everton are another club watching developments.
Parker has made no secret of the fact that he would like to get back into the Premier League following the Hammers' relegation to the Championship, and would love Champions League football to both help his England career and his chances of being a Three Lions regular at Euro 2012.
Despite being voted Football Writers’ Association Player of the Year last season, Parker knows his England chances could be hampered if he stays at West Ham.
He is unlikely to rush into moving though, as he fancies joining Tottenham if Redknapp can successfully shake up his squad.
Parker has four years left on his contract, but West Ham may be willing to allow him to go for around £5million.
As Tottenham scrap to keep hold of Luka Modric, transfer business at White Hart Lane have been very limited so far.
Jermaine Jenas and Wilson Palacios - who is interesting Napoli - are two potential outgoings who could make way for Parker, but there have been no concrete offers yet.
Parker may hold off on a decision until he knows whether a move to Tottenham is a possibility - especially as Spurs chairman Daniel Levy may be against signing another player over 30.
Redknapp is also keeping tabs on developments with Liverpool misfit Joe Cole.
The Spurs boss tried to sign Cole, who's been linked with a loan move to former cub West Ham, last summer and remains a fan.
But, again, a deal could only happen if Redknapp moves players on.