Gers link denied

Tuesday 8 January 2002

Confusion surrounding the future of Lee Clark eased last night after his agent reassured Fulham fans the midfielder is not tying up a shock move to Glasgow Rangers.

The news will come as a relief to Cottagers supporters after a day of uncertainty, in which the 29 year-old was quoted in a Scottish newspaper apparently revealing he was in talks with the Ibrox giants.

Fulham sources told PA sport this morning there were no ongoing discussions - and nor had there ever been an approach from the SPL outfit.

And Clark's furious representative Paul Stretford added:

"There has been no contact between the Clubs - and Lee only signed a new long-term contract at Fulham in the summer.

I would like to state unequivocally that Lee has not spoken to anyone in the media and given any quotes with reference to Rangers, his future at Fulham or any topic regarding his career."

Former Newcastle and Sunderland star Clark was reported as saying "The first I heard about Rangers' interest was at the end of last week. Talks are continuing at the moment and I hope everything will be sorted out by the end of the week.

"I have a problem with my Achilles just now and probably wouldn't pass a medical at the moment - but it should be sorted out by Friday.

"They are a big Club, they have a great set up and they are also pretty much guaranteed European football every year."

But Streford angrily denied Clark had spoken about his future, adding "during the course of today, I've been trying to get to the bottom of quotes attributed to my client. It is deeply upsetting to keep reading, seeing and hearing quotes of no validity attributed to someone.

Lee has given no quotes to any media with regards to his footballing future. It is incidents like this that serve only to create further animosity between football clubs, players and the media."

Clark, who moved to Craven Cottage in a £3 million deal in July 1999, has been an instrumental cog in the Londoners' rise to the Barclaycard Premiership.

However, he has become an increasingly bit-part player this season. He was regularly substituted in September and October, then relegated to the bench throughout last month.

Clark sustained his Achilles problem after 13 minutes of the 0-0 Boxing Day draw with Charlton at Craven Cottage, and has been sidelined for the last fortnight. He is not expected to feature in tomorrow's rearranged FA Cup third round clash at Wycombe.