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Roeder confident of Martins deal
23 Aug 2006 - 13:07:39
Glenn Roeder is confident Nigeria striker Obafemi Martins will be a Newcastle United player before the weekend.
The Magpies have already agreed a £10million fee with Internazionale for the 21-year-old and talks about personal terms are at an advanced stage.
Roeder said: "We have got club officials out there today in Milan trying to tie the deal up.
"I think we are virtually there with an agreement with the player, the club and agents.
"There is quite a bit of paperwork to be done today and we will be rushing around trying to get that all signed up so that hopefully, either very late tonight or first thing in the morning, we can bring Martins back with us.
"It's too early to say, 'Yes, he's signed up' because officially, he has not. But we are very positive over what's going to happen by the end of play today."
The Newcastle manager also insisted he is not concerned about reports claiming Portsmouth are trying to hijack the deal.
Roeder added: "I never worry about speculation at all. I only concern myself with what we are doing.
"As far as I am concerned, as long as the paperwork goes through today, he will be our man and not only Portsmouth, but any other club, will have to look elsewhere for a striker."
Meanwhile, goalkeeper Shay Given will miss Thursday's UEFA Cup tie against Latvian side Ventspils because of a back injury, meaning a rare first-team appearance for Steve Harper.