It looks like Joe Kinnear’s statement yesterday regarding West Ham player Lucas Neill has really upset the London club.
Joe Kinnear – in trouble over Neill statements
And today West Ham have aimed a stinging rebuke at Newcastle United over the pursuit of Lucas Neill.
The Hammers are annoyed that Joe told Sky Sports that they had already talked to Neill’s agent and that it is now up to the West Ham club, as they say there has been no contact between the clubs and insist the defender just isn’t for sale.
The Newcastle United club issued a statement this morning on the web site saying:
“In looking to strengthen our squad, the Club has been exploring a number of possibilities during the transfer window.”
“With regard to Lucas Neill, West Ham United have made it clear he is a player they value as a highly important member of their squad and who they have no desire to sell.”
“Newcastle United respect West Ham’s position and will therefore not be pursuing the matter.”
That’s a good statement from the club and it’s about all they can do to try to settle down the situation, but West Ham fans are not happy at all.
In a statement West Ham responded:
“We are astonished by reports a Premier League manager has claimed contact with one of our players.”
“We’d like to make it clear Neill is a contracted player and we’ve received no approach from any club, including Newcastle.”
This is something Joe should not have done, and we should realize from now on that Kinnear tends to overstate how close we are on deals.
However, we suppose Neill is available on a free transfer in the summer, if he does not commit himself to the London club, so we could still go after him in the summer.
But we’d surprised if Joe didn’t get quite a rebuke from the club behind close doors yesterday, and we’d expect him to be more careful when talking to the press on transfer issues from now on.