Crouch hoping fans sway Modric
Peter Crouch hopes Luka Modric's rapturous reception from Spurs fans on Saturday will help persuade him to turn his back on a move to Chelsea. Spurs fans reacted angrily in July when Modric went on record to state his desire to complete a "dream" move to the club's London rivals, who have made two unsuccessful bids for the player this summer. Daniel Levy has stuck to his position that Modric will not be sold despite the fact that the playmaker launched a verbal public attack on the Tottenham chairman for not allowing him to leave for Stamford Bridge. Modric made his first appearance at White Hart Lane on Saturday since the transfer saga erupted, coming off the bench in the 24th minute of Spurs' 2-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao. Despite his public flirtation with leaving the club, Modric received a huge round of applause when he entered the field - something which Crouch hopes could prove pivotal in keeping the star at the club amid reports that Chelsea weighing up a fresh £30million-plus bid for the player. "I think he might have been a bit concerned about which way it would go but he got a great reception," Crouch said. "That certainly makes it harder for him that the fans are right behind him. He knows that the fans here love him and hopefully he can stay here for as long as he can. "He's going off for international duty now and we were saying to him: 'make sure we see you on Thursday' and we hope he does. "He is a top player. We love him at the club. He is a great lad to have about. We all want him to stay." Levy and Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp both know Modric's creativity and tireless workrate in the centre of midfield will be key to the club's attempt to qualify for the Champions League. Tottenham missed out on qualification for the Champions League by six points after a dip during the second half of last season and concerns have been raised about their ability to challenge for a place in the top four this term. While the five clubs around Spurs have spent heavily, Redknapp has only been able to sign Brad Friedel and teenage duo Cristian Ceballos and Souleymane Coulibaly this summer. Crouch admits he is astonished at the level of spending at the likes of Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool but the England striker is still confident Spurs are serious contenders for a top-four place. "It's amazing when you look at the other teams around us have spent. It's a hell of a lot of money," Crouch said. "I look around our dressing room though and there are a lot of players there who I wouldn't swap for theirs. "I still believe that we have more than enough ability. "The aim has to be to get into the top four. It's going to be difficult. There are some top sides up there that have strengthened but I would still put ourselves right up there with a chance." Crouch was one of six half-time substitutes who turned around Saturday's match, scoring the equaliser after a drab first-half display from a mostly second-string side. Redknapp has made no secret about his desire to sign a striker this summer after Crouch, Jermain Defoe and Roman Pavlyuchenko all struggled to score last term. Crouch has been linked with moves to QPR and Sunderland, but he has no intention of stepping aside to allow any new arrival to walk into the first team. "There is going to be speculation about your future but I'm extremely happy at this club," Crouch said.
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