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Pleat shoots down Baardsen talk

English Barclays Premiership

A newspaper report suggesting that goalkeeper Espen Baardsen has failed to agree terms with Gillingham over a possible move has been categorically denied by David Pleat.

The Mirror reported that Baardsen's hopes of joining the Division One club have been dashed by his wage demands and that he is desperate to quit Spurs following the arrival of Neil Sullivan.

This story appears to be a total non-runner, as Pleat explained: "This is complete and utter nonsense. We have not even spoken to Gillingham."

Pleat had previously confirmed that the club will listen to acceptable offers for the Norwegian.

Sport First is another newspaper playing the speculation game. The weekend sports paper says that Ruel Fox is in talks with Portsmouth regarding a possible L1m move to Fratton Park.

Pleat is quick to dismiss this link. "No, this is not true either. No club has been given permission to talk to Ruel Fox although we have had enquiries about him."

Meanwhile, Aston Villa manager John Gregory insists he remains determined to land David Ginola despite the reported interest of Marseille.

"I have told David that I want him to join us and help us get into the Champions League," said Gregory. "I know Marseille have inquired about him and it is a question of whether he wants to return to France or stay in the Premiership.

Gregory admits that personal terms have not been agreed, but he s confident of striking a deal. "We are still apart, but it is not an unbridgeable gap. I haven't had the chance to sit down face to face with David but when I do I am convinced he will come here."

Photographs courtesy of Action Images Ltd.

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