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By ESPN Staff
Jul 29, 2008

Spurs in talks with Rovers over Bentley

Blackburn Rovers are in talks with Tottenham Hotspur over the transfer of England midfielder David Bentley.

Rovers chairman John Williams has confirmed they are in negotiations with the Londoners but insisted they had not accepted a bid from Spurs for the 23-year-old.

Blackburn have already rejected offers from Spurs and Aston Villa for Bentley, who has been valued at £17million.

Tottenham have money to spend after agreeing to sell Republic of Ireland international Robbie Keane to Liverpool for a fee which could total £20.3million.

Meanwhile, Tottenham striker Darren Bent insists he is ready to fill the void left by Keane - and assistant boss Gus Poyet has urged him to seize his chance.

Keane has left for Liverpool and Dimitar Berbatov could follow before the start of the Premier League campaign, leaving Tottenham looking short on reliable firepower.

Head coach Juande Ramos is set to bring in reinforcements and has been monitoring Russian duo Andrei Arshavin and Roman Pavlyuchenko, but Bent is also ready after finding his chances limited in his first season at White Hart Lane.

The 24-year-old, who scored four against Norwich in a pre-season friendly on Monday, said: 'Hopefully (I will get the chance), obviously a player like Robbie needs replacing but if I am called upon and the gaffer gives me the nod, I will give it a go.

'He [Ramos] hasn't said anything [about Keane], what has happened with Robbie is down to him and the club, he didn't say anything to the players and we just have to get on with it.

'He [Keane] was a big figure in the dressing room, a nice guy and a top man, but obviously as I said we have to keep moving forward and push on in the league.'

Ramos needs to find a new vice-skipper, although Keane was effectively the captain last season as Ledley King was injured for most of the campaign.

Bent added on Sky Sports: 'It is disappointing for the club, he has had five good years here where he has scored a lot of goals and has been brilliant for the club.

'We can't stand on ceremony and we have got to move forward.'

Poyet has told Bent to make the most of Keane's departure, adding: 'Darren Bent has been fantastic throughout pre-season. He's trained really hard and he's probably been the pick of the strikers so far and this time he showed what he's all about.

'He was one of the strikers last season, he didn't have too many chances because Robbie and 'Berba' were on fire. Now he has taken the chance so maybe we will see Darren Bent every week.'

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