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Manchester United target Luka Modric delays signing new Tottenham contract amid doubts over future of Harry Redknapp

By Greg Stobart

Manchester United target Luka Modric will not sign a new contract with Tottenham until the future of manager Harry Redknapp is resolved, understands.

The midfield playmaker has agreed personal terms in principle that would make him the best paid player in the club’s history on around £100,000-a-week - but he will wait until the end of the season before deciding whether to commit his future to the club.

Modric, 26, is believed to be worried about the club’s direction should Redknapp take the vacant England job despite Spurs currently sitting third in the Premier League and looking likely to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

The Croat is a huge fan of Redknapp and it was only his respect for the Spurs manager that stopped him from going on strike last summer when he fell out with chairman Daniel Levy as he attempted to force a move to Chelsea.

As revealed by last week, Redknapp is torn as to whether he would want the England job and his decision could have a direct impact on the future of Modric. Sources close to the player believe he will sign a new deal if the 64-year-old snubs the Three Lions to stay at Spurs.

Redknapp has spoken of the need to reward Modric, who earns around £45,000-a-week, with a deal that reflects his worth. His existing contract expires in 2016 and he was made aware last summer that Chelsea would be prepared to almost triple his salary.

Relations between Modric and Levy remain frosty after the Spurs chief kept the player at White Hart Lane against his will, rejecting a series of bids from Chelsea including a whopping £40m offer.

The Blues appear unlikely to renew their attempts to sign Modric but he is a leading target for Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson as he looks to add creativity to his side and find a long-term replacement for Paul Scholes.

The former Dinamo Zagreb man enjoys life in London - he has recently bought a new home in Hertfordshire - but would find the lure of a move to Old Trafford difficult to turn down as he is desperate to compete for trophies.

Tottenham would demand at least £40m for Modric and it remains to be seen whether United have the funds to make a bid that would tempt Spurs into selling their best player to a Premier League rival.

Modric is content at Spurs but to commit his future to the club he will need the club to demonstrate their ambition with any replacement for Redknapp as well as in the transfer market.

Modric angered people within the club last summer by trying to engineer a move to Chelsea by giving interviews in which he described his “dream” of moving to Stamford Bridge and questioned Tottenham's ambition.

He also accused Levy of breaking a “gentleman's agreement” to allow him to move to a bigger club. Spurs are adamant that no such agreement existed but told Modric they will listen to offers this summer should Redknapp's side miss out on a top-four finish in the Premier League.

That appears an unlikely scenario with Spurs currently third and 10 points clear of bitter rivals Arsenal, who they face at Emirates Stadium on Sunday, but Modric is yet to make any public comment on the events of last summer.

The creative midfielder, who cost £16.5m when he moved to Tottenham in the summer of 2008, missed last weekend’s FA Cup clash against Stevenage through illness but is expected to be fit for the north London derby.

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