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By ESPN Staff

Krancjar happy to stay - for now

Portsmouth midfielder Niko Kranjcar insisted he is happy at Fratton Park but confirmed he would be tempted if a big club wanted to buy him.

The 23-year-old Croatia international is looking forward to European football at Fratton Park next season after helping Pompey win the FA Cup by defeating Cardiff.

Kranjcar put in the type of tidy performance that has seen him linked with other clubs, but he said: 'I don't want to go anywhere, I'm very happy. Obviously playing in Europe is a big chance for me.

'I'd be crazy if I said I wasn't tempted by the calls of big clubs because everyone wants to achieve the most in their career and play Champions League football and win more trophies.

'But I'm very happy at Portsmouth, especially after this win. You can only be happy and next season will only get better. Playing European football is another reason why I'm happy here.

'I'm not in a hurry to go anywhere, I'm 24 this summer and I'm looking ahead to the European Championships and having a great year.

'What the new season brings no-one knows yet but I'm happy at Portsmouth and it's a great place to be at the moment.'

Kranjcar was part of a midfield that overpowered Cardiff at Wembley, with Lassana Diarra the key man with his driving forward runs.

Despite being billed as `Mini Makelele', Diarra has shown an attacking edge to his game since boss Harry Redknapp bought him after unsuccessful spells at Chelsea and Arsenal.

He made a limited impact at both clubs but still won the FA Cup with Chelsea a year ago and now has a hat-trick in his sights.

'This is why I signed here. I said it before, it's a good team and a good squad and we've qualified for Europe,' the France international said.

'There were many reasons but this is one of the reasons I left Arsenal. First as a player, you want to play. You want to show what you can do. I'm here because of the manager, because of this, and because of many things.

'It is my second medal because I won last year and I wish that next year I will win again.'

Diarra is young but Redknapp has a knack of reviving careers, as he did when he signed goalkeeper David James from Manchester City.

James has shown stunning form this season, has earned his place in the England side and capped it off by erasing the memories of previously two FA Cup finals that ended in defeat.

'I was going to leave City because I had a year left on my contract,' James said. 'The plan was to do a year at City and maybe move to Plymouth, not that Plymouth knew about it, and wind the career down.

'Harry came in and I thought I could commute the two-and-a-half hours each way and give it a shot, it's all about environments.

'I had a chat with Sol (Campbell). He wanted to do stuff here, not just use it for his pastures. That was one of my ideas. It's better than I anticipated in two years, it has to be said, but well deserved.'


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