• Chairman may have put in an offer, says manager
• Athletic Bilbao turn down £25m bid for Fernando Llorente
Harry Redknapp left open the prospect of signing Newcastle United's Andy Carroll before the transfer window closes tomorrow evening by admitting his chairman, Daniel Levy, may have made a bid for the striker. It is also understood Athletic Bilbao rejected a £25m offer for their forward Fernando Llorente from Tottenham Hotspur.
Following Spurs' record 4-0 defeat by Fulham in the FA Cup fourth round today it was confirmed that Robbie Keane had signed on loan for West Ham United until the end of the season. Asked if this meant Redknapp requires another goalscorer to join Jermain Defoe, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Peter Crouch he said: "I never made a bid for Andy Carroll. Maybe the chairman did but I never did. Nobody has told me we've made a bid. I can't get a striker in – Robbie Keane has gone on loan, we've lost him. The chairman made the deal. I think it's on loan but, if they stay up, there's a set fee [of £6m for West Ham] to buy him."
Of Llorente Redknapp laughed off the prospect of the 25-year-old replacing Keane. "No. I'm not going back to Spain any more. No chance," he said, in reference to his mugging there last week after watching Llorente play in a Spanish cup game.
Yet despite the denial it is understood that Tottenham were informed by Bilbao that there is no chance of him departing before the close of the window. Sources at the Basque club have confirmed that a formal bid was made, understood to be in the region of £25m.
Despite Llorente being a long-term target for Redknapp, Bilbao continue to say they will not sell him unless his £36m buyout clause is paid. And as the clause is not binding regarding international transfers Bilbao can also demand more from Tottenham. It is thought that Llorente does not wish to leave midway through the season.
In response to reports that Spurs had again attempted to prise Scott Parker from West Ham, Redknapp said: "Not a chance. I love Parker but we've not got a chance."
Redknapp did confirm he has a crisis in defence. "[Younes] Kaboul might be out six weeks [due to a knee injury]. We're down to two centre-backs now. [William] Gallas has a hip injury and I didn't want to use him. He had to be on the bench [against Fulham] because we have no cover. Kaboul has had an operation on his knee, [Ledley] King and [Jonathan] Woodgate aren't fit and the only spare defender in the squad is [Vedran] Corluka. We've got nobody else at all to play there," Redknapp said before ruling out any late move for defensive cover before the window closes at 11pm today. "Where are we going to find somebody who is good enough to play?"
Any hope Spurs held of progressing to the fifth round of the Cup vanished within 15 minutes of kick-off following two penalties that were converted by Danny Murphy and the sending off of Michael Dawson.
"We made an incredibly bad start," Redknapp said. "Everything that could've gone wrong did. We gave two horrendous goals away through Michael Dawson and you can't keep on coming back from those starts. Michael started sloppy and gave two goals away [but] it's not like him. He's been fantastic for us but it was a terrible start.
Redknapp was not convinced by the red card. "I've not seen the replay but I thought the second penalty was harsh and the sending off as well. Michael feels it was a harsh decision because Dembélé had the shot. But if he tugged his shirt – I can't say. You can't see anything from that dug-out. It's the worst viewing position I've ever been in my life."
Mark Hughes and his Fulham side have a home tie against Wigan Athletic or Bolton Wanderers in the next round. "We're looking to progress in a fantastic competition. We've got a home draw and we have no apprehension about taking on anyone here. But league form and league points are what we're looking at."