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Sounding off over Sol 3

Posted on 31 May 2001  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

More of YOUR reaction to the departure of Sol Campbell...

Sol Campbell. Greedy? Ambitious? Or just a 'modern day' footballer.

When I first saw Sol play alongside Gary Mabbutt in the middle of our defence (one of Gerry Francis's few tactical positives!), I knew he was special. Being a centre half myself, albeit a slow Sunday League one, I'd like to think I knew what to look for. This guy had strength, pace, an aerial presence; steady passing ability, reasonable positional sense and the added bonus of an eye for goal. Spurs had finally created someone a bit special for the centre half slot.

Over the years he developed into a world class defender, this opinion being backed up by his great performances in France 98. However, with every under achieving season Spurs had, speculation mounted as to when he would leave for pastures new. With the modern day footballer having the advantage of the Bosman ruling, a player of Sol's ability would have his pick of Europe's top club's.

What kept me upbeat about the whole situation was Sol's constant reassurance that he 'was 100% Spurs', 'a fan since childhood', 'a man not motivated by money' and I foolishly believed he would stay for his whole career. I also foolishly believed that there may still be some loyal players in the game (hats off to Adams, Mabbutt, Le Tissier, Bull and sadly few others).

Sol had stated that he would only stay at Spurs if we could offer him 'Champions League football. If that's the case then why didn't he do the honourable thing and leave last season. He knew full well that barring a miracle we would never qualify for the Champions League. He's one of the best defenders in the world and to replace him would cost millions. Millions of pounds that we would miss out on if he waited for one more season before upping and leaving. This he has now done and the whole thing stinks. At the end of the day he is only one player and we will continue to go forward. I just hope to God (for Sol's sake) that he doesn't join 'them down the road'. Some would argue 'what goes around come around' with regard to the Hoddle saga and we got what was coming.

Sol, You were a great player for Spurs and deserve to play at the highest level but the whole way it was handled was nothing short of disgraceful. You clearly ARE motivated by money, £130,000 a week - who are you trying to kid? PS. The lime in my bottle of Sol has left a very bitter taste.
Tim Binstead

It's a pity that Sol was not willing to give Glenn a chance to see what he could do. Sol started off as a striker and was turned into the great defender he now is by Spurs, we will do it again with some of the promising youngsters we have in that position. Time to now move on and concentrate on getting back to the top, improving our squad and allowing youngsters such as Simon Davies to show how good they can be.
Robert Campbell

You only have to look at Tony Adams to see what being Arsenal through and through is all about. Over the years he has had numerous offers to leave, and when his Arsenal contract expired in the mid nineties he didn't even take an agent to discuss things. We have here someone who claimed to be Spurs through and through when really he is Sol through and through. Adams would die for Arsenal and could have left when things went stale towards the end of GG's reign and under Bruce Rioch, but remained and has now been part of three successive Champions League campaigns. Sol take note!
Paul Delicata

Fair enough Sol given us loyal service over the years and yes he is a great defender, but he taken us for a ride over this contract situation. First of all, if he did love the club as much as he said he did, he would of slapped in a transfer request one or two years ago for the respect of the club, so at least we would of got a fee for him. We could have sold him for around £15million and that would have got us one or two good players. Secondly, if he loved the club he should of given one more season. The future of the club is bright. We've got a good manager who knows the traditions of the club and a good crop of young players coming through. Sol could have waited one season to see through the talent we need to nuture. If he wanted to leave then, clubs would still have been in for him without question. Next, he should not have priced him self out. He knew ENIC would not meet such outrageous wage demands. There was purpose in those demands and they were not in the interests of the club. They offered to make Sol one the highest paid players in the world at £80,000 p/w. If that isn't enough then I don't know what is, and to ask for a clause allowing a free transfer if we don't qualify for the champions league is obscene.

Sol is a football man, and he should know that even though we're looking up, a champions league place next season is unrealistic. Good on you ENIC for not giving in! My final note is Darren Anderton. How he can say ENIC let Sol walk away is stupid. £80,000 p/w!!! If a offer like that is made I don't think that is a half-hearted attempt. If Darren wants to leave over this situation he should go. On his day he can be one of England's best midfielders, but how often is that? He's spent most of the time on the treatment table, and I think either he needs to get his head down and play a superb season or go. We need players that are loyal and will pull together to get us back to the top, now more than ever. Glenn Hoddle, throw out the people who are not dedicated to the cause and bring some steel.
Steven Lau

Sol has been a great servant to the club during his time with us. The club are to blame for allowing his contract to lapse so that he could walk without a transfer fee. When he refused to start talking about a new contract 12 months ago he should have been sold then so that a fee would have been paid. I see from his comments today Anderton is thinking of going as well, if that happens watch Rebrov and Carr head for the exit as well. Will the last player to leave please turn out the light.
David Spreadbury

I would just like to say that Spurs should release Darren Anderton as all he has done with the odd exception (seasons where England has a major tournament) is milk the club for money. Now I read that he thinks Spurs do not match his ambition. This is a player who has played 1 full season in the last 4 and the most ambitious club he is likely to find would be a club like Coventry or Middlesborough. Does this mean that he harbours ambitions to play for a club the limit of their ambition would be to be safe from relegation by April. No. I think what worries him is that he now sees that the new owners will not be held to ransom as he and his agent have done in the past. Mr Anderton should realise he is expendable and that unlike Sol Campbell Europe’s top clubs are unlikely to break down doors to sign him up. Finally I would like to say thanks to Sol for all his efforts for us down the years and I wish him well in the future and hope he may return to us in the future.
Des K

The effect Sol's departure will be enormous. You do not lose players like that and become a better side. He was quite simply the backbone of the side and without him we would have struggled to stay up in recent times. It's alright to say we have cover and new players can come in, but there are only 2 or 3 players in the whole world who are good enough to replace him and we have not got the spending power or clout at this time to bring them to the Lane. Anderton saying he is reconsidering his future now that Sol has gone infuriates me. I was not really sure if he was still playing anymore anyway. He can go where he likes 'cos 50 games in 5 years isn't really up to much when you are on £28,000 a week is it??
Kevin McGarahan

I don’t believe losing Sol is that big a loss, defenders are easier to replace than any other position and anyone who asks for the kind of money he was has no interest in playing for our Spurs. He knew they would never meet his demands and that’s why he did it. This club needs players that are committed to taking Tottenham that stage further and not checking their bank balance to make sure they got payed the right amount. All we need is an experienced defender to replace him. I have every faith in Glenn Hoddle to find the perfect replacement.
Jon Munt

The club is right NOT to be held to ransom by Sol and his agent. If he didn't want to stay at Spurs then he should have been bold enough to just say so, not use the excuse that the club were not prepared to pay his (ridiculous) wage demands. Sol has been one of our best players in recent years and I'm upset to see him go, but no one player is more important than the team. I would much rather see £20m spent on encouraging the excellent new talent emerging at Spurs than just keeping hold of one player. We'll miss him, but Spurs have got a bright future ahead regardless of Sol's departure. Well done ENIC for sticking to your guns.
Daniel Budd

We only want 100% spurs players at the club! Sol obviously wasn’t.
Carl Rudall

Darren Anderton should be told to shut up or leave. A player who spends the majority of his time at the club on the physio's table whilst picking up a huge pay cheque each week is in no position to think that he is irreplaceable. With the emergence of young players such as Simon Davies this season, I’m sure that Darren Anderton could easily be replaced. After all he has probably missed more games than he has played over the last 5 years.
David Allsop

I agree with the board's decision. I met Sol during half time during Palace-Spurs many years ago before he had properly broken into the team. He not only seemed to lack a desire to play the game but also did not appear to love the club at all. I am a lifelong fan and never bought anything he said about how much he loved the club. I agree with his ambition to play in Europe, but I really think Hoddle will get us there at the end of next season. Also, if he really cared about the club at all he would have signed a contract last year and we would at least have been able to cash in on him. What was to stop him signing a contract now and being told that we would sell him if we didn't qualify for Europe next year? The answer is greed. He knew that other clubs would not pay him these extortionate wages if he went for a hefty transfer fee. I am glad that he has gone. Hoddle proved at Southampton that he is a very good club manager and he also showed at Chelsea his ability to attract fantastic players like Gullit and Vialli. I'm looking forward to next season more than I have looked forward to any season for years.
Robert Jackson

Whilst it is disappointing to lose Sol Campbell, it is a fact that the club cannot offer European football next season for whatever reason/s. His own reasons are in my view shallow and seem more of an excuse than anything else. The situation however does reflect seasons of under-investment reflected in poor quality players without the Tottenham pedigree, many of whom are still with the club. Furthermore the comments of Darren Anderton are disgraceful in the light of his annual contribution to the team. He should be off-loaded quickly and the squad strengthened by a blend of experienced, younger, and fitter players to bring success back to the club for which we all desire. It is time for ENIC to provide Glenn Hoddle with the resource to construct a team worthy of the club's history and make players like Campbell regret ever leaving. It is time to move out of the shadow of Highbury, Old Trafford etc and be a leading light once again. Enic must financially oblige the manager to achieve this goal.
Steve Hubbard

I’ve been a Spurs fan all my life & I think that the question is not so much about Sol leaving, as it is about how the club is handling it. Nobody but Sol knows the real reason for his departure, but his loyal service to the club cannot be questioned and the parting shots from Mr Buchler were unwarranted. The bitter truth is that - as of now- Spurs cannot satisfy top stars. However does that justify vilifying them when & if they leave. Mr. Buchler should maybe consider the possibility of a future return before he next opens his mouth!.
David Orman

It was a sad day for the club when Sol left. Now it’s up to us as the fans of this great club, to look to the future. With the return of Glenn (and Teddy) and the fine crop of young talent that we witnessed at the end of the season, why shouldn’t we look forward with optimism. A few more signings, BIG players, and it will be looking up!!
Matty Mcloughlin