Hands off Fin

Monday 29 April 2002

Fulham today warned off any clubs hoping to lure Republic of Ireland defender Steve Finnan away from west London this summer.

The 26-year-old is reportedly coveted by Manchester United and Arsenal but any bid is set to be rejected.

Finnan has played in all Fulham's league and cup matches this season, including the 0-0 draw with Leicester on Saturday, and is highly rated there.

He was given a new five-year deal last July and manager Jean Tigana intends to add to his squad this summer rather than sell first-team regulars.

His assistant, Christian Damiano, said: "I would not be surprised if there are clubs looking at Steve and it would not be the first time. But we want to build the squad and that would be difficult if you sell your best players.

"Steve is a very important player in our team and we want to build around people like him."