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Bruce eyes window closure
05 Jan 2009 - 13:45:11
Wigan Athletic boss Steve Bruce has admitted he can't wait for the transfer window to slam shut at the end of the month.
The Latics chief is concerned that a number of his leading players have been linked with moves away from the JJB Stadium in January.
Speculation continues to surround the futures of strike duo Emile Heskey and Amr Zaki, while Ecuador midfielder Luis Antonio Valencia is the latest player to be linked with a window departure.
Recent reports have suggested that Valencia is a target for Spanish champions Real Madrid.
Bruce claims he is under no pressure to sell anybody in January, but the transfer window is still an uneasy time for the Latics boss.
"It is the silly season and there's bound to be tons of speculation between now and the end of January," he told the Wigan Evening Post.
"There's nothing I can do about that but my priority is to keep my best players here. I'm not under pressure to sell my best players and I don't want to do that.
"The big clubs are watching us constantly. I'm not surprised that Valencia's attracting interest.
"He is, in my opinion, the best right-sided midfielder in the Premier League - if you put Cristiano Ronaldo on the left!
"It proves how far we've come in 12 months that these clubs are looking at our players.
"But I'll be delighted when the window closes because I'm trying to build something special.
"We picked up 59 points in the 2008 calendar year - enough to secure a top-seven or top-eight place. So why can't we go on and make a bid for a place in Europe?"