Hammers receive another Carrick bid

Last updated at 13:23 05 August 2004

Portsmouth chairman Milan Mandaric has revealed his club have submitted an improved offer for the player and he is confident of success.

Mandaric said: "I know of Everton's interest and I am not surprised because there is always going to be competition for a player of his calibre.

"But I have had a long dialogue with West Ham's chairman Terry Brown and improved our offer. I believe we should be there but they wanted to sleep on it."

Portsmouth failed with a £2.5million offer for Carrick this week with Pardew revealing that a higher offer, said to be from Everton, had been made.

However now Portsmouth have returned with a new bid, either beating, or at least matching their rivals.

Last month Crystal Palace, who beat the Hammers in the play-off final to win promotion to the Premiership, also failed with a £2.5million offer for the 23-year-old.


Carrick looks set to be dropped by West Ham for their curtain-raiser at Leicester while the chase for his signature gathers pace.

It is believed three clubs - Portsmouth, Everton and Crystal Palace - are in the race to sign the midfielder, who can walk away for nothing when his contract expires in a year's time.

And Hammers boss Pardew is concerned the constant speculation could have a destabilising effect both on Carrick and West Ham if he is allowed to play at the Walker's Stadium.

Pardew said: "The situation with Michael is that there have been bids tabled from more than two clubs. But this is not the best timing while we are preparing for Leicester.

"There is obviously a question mark about whether he will play for us on Saturday. I've tried to make him stay but he wouldn't sign a new contract.

"Whether he plays on Saturday will come down to how he feels. There is a huge risk for us to play him, not just financially but mentally for the squad. There is no easy answer."

Pardew added: "We knew he had to go. We've tried to take the squad forward knowing that he was going. We feel we're in good fettle for the game anyway. We go into it in good spirits.

"I'm hoping our fans understand the position we're in with the financial restraints we're under.

"We are close to the valuation we want and that's why it's more of a positive that he will possible not play for us at the weekend."

Pardew has signed Teddy Sheringham, Sergei Rebrov and Luke Chadwick this summer, and plans to continue adding to his squad.

But it looks increasingly likely that Carrick, long regarded as the one remaining jewel in West Ham's crown since the exodus following relegation from the Premiership, has played his last game for the club.