Harry - Downing deal dead
Harry Redknapp has claimed that Tottenham's bid to land Middlesbrough winger Stewart Downing is 'dead'.
By Rob Parrish
Last Updated: 10/01/09 9:03pm
Harry Redknapp has claimed that Tottenham's bid to bring Middlesbrough winger Stewart Downing to White Hart Lane is 'dead'.
Spurs had two bids for the England international rebuffed by the Teessiders during the opening days of the transfer window, with Boro adamant that one of their star players was not for sale.
Downing handed in a transfer request in a bid to push through a switch to North London but it was swiftly rejected, and Redknapp insists he is now turning his attention elsewhere as he looks for left-sided options.
He told the Sunday Times: "We tried to get Downing but Middlesbrough didn't want to sell him, so that's dead now.
"It's not going to change, so we move on. We need a left-footer to give us balance.
"Jamie O'Hara came on there against Burnley and did well, and Gareth Bale can move forward one from left-back and do the job, so we're not desperate, but Downing would give us that bit more."
The right-footed David Bentley has been operating on the left, with limited success, with Aaron Lennon preferred on the right and Redknapp admits the former Blackburn player is struggling to adapt.
"David's future is the same as anybody else's," he said. "If you play well, you're in; if you don't play well, you're out.
"(Jermaine) Jenas and (Tom) Huddlestone are both fit this week, suddenly we've got real competition in the middle of the park, so somebody is not going to play.
"It has been difficult for David because I've played him on his wrong side."
While Redknapp is looking for further reinforcements during January following the return of striker Jermain Defoe, he has no plans to sell goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes.
The Brazilian was lampooned for some of his early season displays, but has shown a marked improvement since Redknapp replaced Juande Ramos and will not be leaving White Hart Lane, despite strong interest from his former club PSV Eindhoven.
Redknapp added: "The guy has shown unbelievable character to come through what he has had to deal with. He has never hidden.
"He had hand and wrist injuries, which could have given him a break from it, the physios kept telling me he shouldn't play, but he stayed in there and is improving as he gets used to English football.
"I could sell him tomorrow, there's another club who would give us our money back, but he's been outstanding lately and he's staying. He's a good lad and he's shown real bottle."