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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 July 2006, 16:47 GMT 17:47 UK
Redknapp plays down Anelka link
Nicolas Anelka
Anelka has already played for three Premiership clubs
Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp has denied they are close to signing French striker Nicolas Anelka from Fenerbahce.

The former Arsenal player claimed Portsmouth had offered the Turkish side 8.2m for him but Redknapp told BBC Radio Solent this was not the case.

"We have made enquiries and spoken to people over there but we're nowhere near a deal at the moment," he said.

"He would be a good buy at the right price, but the figures they are talking at the moment are beyond us."

Anelka claimed Portsmouth had made an offer for him, and that Blackburn and Bolton were also interested in signing him.

"Fenerbahce would like to keep me but they understand that I want to rejoin a major European league," he said.

"My ambition would be to join a club that regularly plays in the Champions League, but I cannot force them to recruit me.

"If I had to join a club like Portsmouth, I would go there with the aim of giving my best. This is the same for Bolton or Blackburn, whose managers have also contacted me.

Gerard Houllier is responsible for what happened to me

Nicolas Anelka

"I hope things will be sorted within 10 days, as myself and Fenerbahce need to know as soon as possible."

Anelka, who has also played for Real Madrid, Paris St Germain and Manchester City, hit out at former Anfield boss Gerard Houllier for wrecking his career by refusing to sign him on a permanent deal.

He said: "When he told me at the last minute that he had no intention of keeping me, he put me in a difficult situation because I had not negotiated anything with other teams.

"And I ended up joining a club (Manchester City) against my will.

"Gerard Houllier is responsible for what happened to me. If he had not snubbed me at Liverpool I would not have had to play with minor clubs for the past four years which I had never imagined joining.

"I would not be where I am right now, that is to say waiting to be signed by a great English club."

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Anelka has acquired a reputation for being difficult, and also claimed: "I was told that people from Manchester City were saying bad things about me to other clubs who are interested in me.

"The clubs should instead ask the players I played with and they would see.

"It's incredible because I have never had any problems when playing in England except when I asked to leave Arsenal in 1999.

"If great clubs don't sign me it's never because of the way I play. It's very frustrating, especially because I know I could do as well, if not better, than their strikers."



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