Levy should hold firm and not be forced to compromise fee

Football FanCast guest columnist Kevin Wise feels that Dan Levy should hold firm, with regards to Darren Bent's asking price.

The hypocritical nature of football clubs never fail to amaze me, especially when it comes to buying and selling players. I know haggling and mind games are part and parcel of it all and Steve Bruce's outburst today was just one of those impassioned pleas to try and drive a wedge between Darren Bent and the club hierarchy, due to Sunderland being unwilling to meet the reported £16.5m that we are after for his services. I personally don't think he is worth anything like that, but on the same token I wouldn't say that Kenwyne Jones did anything to justify his £20m tag.

I believe Daniel Levy is absolutely right to hold out for top money for Darren Bent, especially with Sunderland being the interested party. Had Niall Quinn not shouted his mouth off with regards to what was probably deemed confidential business, at the time in our January pursuit for Kenwyne Jones, then I am sure that the football club would look to have reached a fairer compromise. Quite why he felt the need to expose it as a way of highlighting Sunderland's financial might, following Ellis Short takeover, I don't know, but it is seemingly backfiring on him as not only can they attract players to the north-east, but clubs are rightfully upping their prices as they have money to spend.

Sunderland has really shot themselves in the foot here and I hope that Levy stands firm with them and doesn't give them an inch. As much as I loathe Darren Bent as a player and would like to see the back of him, it has to be said that there is no way in the world that he is a £3.5m lesser player than Kenwyne Jones. They set the precedent at the end of the day and they should be made to pay the price, despite how overinflated it might be.


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