Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp is ready to strike a big blow to Luka Modric's hopes of joining Chelsea by fielding the wantaway playmaker in the Europa League play-off clash against Hearts.
The 25-year-old, who has not played a competitive match since Chelsea launched the first of three bids for the player in the middle of June, has been diagnosed with minor ankle, groin and hamstring injuries over the last few weeks and also refused to play in Monday's 3-0 defeat at Manchester United as he thought he was not focused enough.
"I don't know if he will be fit but if he is okay I would be looking to give him an hour. If he is fit he will play," Redknapp said.
That would mean Modric would be ineligible to play in the Champions League until February - a move which could severely diminish Chelsea's desire to land the star given the importance they give the competition.
When pushed on the effect that could have on Modric's move to Stamford Bridge, Redknapp retorted: "We are not in the Champions League so it won't affect us.
"I'm not bothered about anyone else. He is here, we love him, he is a great player and I need him back playing."
Redknapp revealed on Wednesday that Spurs chairman Daniel Levy had contacted the Blues to tell them to put an end to their pursuit of Modric.
He said: "The chairman made another statement last night that he is definitely not going. He said he spoke to Chelsea and he told them, 'Let's put an end to this because it's not going to happen'."
Redknapp was also keen to stress that Spurs will bring in at least two more players before the transfer window shuts next week.
Emmanuel Adebayor could complete his loan from Manchester City before the start of next week.
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms