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Last Updated: Sunday, 15 June, 2003, 17:54 GMT 18:54 UK
Dundee to field Brent
Zurab Khizanishvili
Zurab Khizanishvili was SPL young player of the year
Dundee appear poised to conclude the signing of Trinidad and Tobago international defender Brent Sancho.

But the Scottish Premier League outfit insist that they have yet had no approach from another club for the player he is likely to replace, Zurab Khizanishvili.

The 26-year-old Sancho expects to agree a two-year deal and join up with the squad from Dens Park at their North American training camp on 11 July.

Dreadlocked Sancho, who captains his international team and partners Livingston's Marvin Andrews, first impressed Dundee boss Jim Duffy during the Dark Blues' winter-break trip to the islands in January.

He is a colourful character, notorious for some ambitious - and occasionally reckless - attacking runs from defence and for being one of 19 international players who went on strike for better conditions ahead of a friendly against Finland.

Having met the guys before has made things easier
Brent Sancho
But he said: "I'm looking forward to concentrating fully on football and doing my best to be a mainstay on the team.

"Having met the guys before, when they were in Trinidad, has made things easier."

Sancho earned his first professional contract with Mypa 47 at the age of 21, helping the club finish third in the Finnish league and qualify for European competition.

He then moved to the USA, had a brief stint with the Metrostars before heading for Charleston Battery and for the last two seasons has been with Portland Timbers while playing for Trinidad and Tobago champions San Juan Jabloteh in the close season.

Sancho, who used to work in the ill-fated World Trade Centre in New York, admits that losing two close friends in the terrorist attack on the buildings on 11 September 2001 helped shape his outlook on life and more determined to make the most of his football.

Meanwhile, a Dundee spokesman insisted that the club had heard nothing from Tottenham Hotspur despite a Sunday newspaper claim that the London club were about to sign Khizanishvili.

Glen Hoddle, said to have been impressed with the 21-year-old's recent performance for Georgia against Ireland, is reportedly offering the player twice the wages already on the table from Rangers.

Khizanishvili has said that Ibrox is his preferred destination but is taking time to make a decision between the Scottish champions and rival offers from three top English clubs and another from Portugal.

Dundee, though, stress that they had yet received no offers for the player.

The Tayside club will receive compensation as, although Khizanishvili is out of contract, he is under the age of 23.


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