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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Aug 4, 2006

West Brom stand firm over keeper Kuszczak

West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace has insisted they will not sell goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak to Manchester United 'unless the deal suits us' after rejecting a £2.5million bid for the Poland international.

Albion have made it clear to United any deal for Kuszczak would have to include striker Giuseppe Rossi moving in the opposite direction on loan for the 2006-2007 campaign.

Baggies manager Bryan Robson has recognised the need to strengthen his attack as well as in defence as his side look to regain their Premiership status at the first attempt.

But that proposal has been knocked back by Sir Alex Ferguson and Albion have insisted they will not consider selling Kuszczak unless they receive an acceptable offer.

Peace said: 'At this moment in time, selling Tomasz Kuszczak to Manchester United is not a viable option. It would severely weaken our squad at a time when we are trying to strengthen it for a promotion push.

'We have had numerous talks with United and have told them any deal would have to include their highly-rated young striker, Giuseppe Rossi, joining us on loan for the season.

'Although this would weaken us temporarily until we signed another keeper to compete with Pascal Zuberbuhler, it would increase our attacking options - an area we're actively looking to strengthen.

'However, United have told us Rossi will not be going out on loan this season.

'It means that if we sold Tomasz to United, without Rossi coming in return, it would potentially cause us more problems without solving any - despite the receipt of cash.'

Kuszczak came to United's attention after a series of fine performances last season which meant Chris Kirkland was kept out of the side during the second half of the campaign after recovering from a kidney injury.

Peace acknowledged: 'This will come as a disappointment to Tomasz who has indicated to us he would like to join United.

'But it is the board's job to do what is best for this football club and we will not sell Tomasz unless the deal suits us.

'Because of the way this football club is structured, we are under no pressure to sell anyone. Tomasz will only be sold if it is in our interests to do so.'

Robson has to decide whether Kuszczak will be in the right frame of mind after rejecting United's offer for tomorrow's Coca-Cola Championship opener with Hull, or to opt for Zuberbuhler.

Meanwhile, QPR have accepted an offer of £1.5million from West Brom for Danny Shittu. The eventual fee could double and rise to £3million depending on certain criteria.

Shittu will travel to the Black Country today to discuss personal terms and undergo a medical.

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