Spurs swoop for Riesgo

TOTTENHAM manager Harry Redknapp has handed a trial to Real Sociedad goalkeeper Asier Riesgo, the Spanish club have confirmed.

Riesgo, 26, was a Spain U-21 international and spent last season on loan at Recreativo Huelva before returning to Segunda Division club Sociedad.

Redknapp needs cover for first-choice goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes because Carlo Cudicini suffered injuries to his pelvis and wrists in a motorcycle accident and is expected to miss the rest of the campaign.

“Asier will train next week with Tottenham,” read a statement from Sociedad.

Redknapp will be expected to make a decision on whether he wants to sign Riesgo but no fee has been agreed between the two clubs.

The Spurs manager is also in the market for a central midfielder to compete with Wilson Palacios, Jermaine Jenas and Tom Huddlestone for a starting place, with Brazilian prospect Sandro a target from Internacional.

Redknapp is reluctant, however, to look for another centre-back despite injuries to Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate.

“If Woody is fit and Ledley is fit we’re great there,” he said.

“We’re in great shape if they’re fit but it’s a big if.

“When they played together last year they were a great partnership. But getting them out on the pitch at the same time has proved more difficult.”

Meanwhile, Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has admitted that the club has opened talks with Javier Mascherano about extending his contract. The midfielder has been strongly linked with a move away from Anfield for some months, with Barcelona said to be the most likely destination.

The Reds have continually denied that the Argentina international is for sale, particularly as the reports came so soon after the club sold influential midfielder Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid in the summer.

Mascherano, who has admitted to finding it hard to settle on Merseyside, appears to have turned the corner and discussions are under way.

“We were talking with him and his agent a month ago about our idea and his idea,” Benitez said.

“Everyone can see he’s doing really well and has come back to his best. We were really pleased to talk to him to make progress.

“We have plenty of time but we are happy with him and he is happier now too. He has two more years on his contract, we were talking before and we will sit down sooner rather than later and talk about the future.

“The last conversations that we had were very positive.”


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