Date: 13th January 2006 at 11:59am
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West Ham manager Alan Pardew revealed he will not put the club in the same position as Leeds Utd by paying ‘crazy’ money for players.

Leeds ‘lived the dream’, as their chairman said at the time, and have suffered for it since.

The east-Londoners are one of several clubs said to be tracking Norwich’s England Under-21 international Dean Ashton, whom the Canaries value at around £8million, but Pardue at £5m.

A permanent deal to take full-back Glen Johnson from Chelsea has also been mooted, while Red Star Belgrade’s 6ft 8in striker Nikola Zigic is another name linked with a big-money move to Upton Park.

Pardew: ‘We have bid for two players this week. On both of them we are not seeing much light, to be honest, and that is where we are.

‘For all clubs in this window, if you take someone, you are probably going to pay over the odds. I think you have to accept that.

‘But you have to accept what you are going to get at the end of it – what is it going to do to your club? Sometimes everybody involved needs to take that on board, the end result.

‘We are in areas with other teams, in negotiations, where it is very, very delicate.

‘Sometimes it is very difficult for a laymen – they would find it hard to fathom and hard to believe some of the figures which are being suggested. As a football manager, I find some of them hard to digest as well.

‘At the moment I am just trying to keep a logical head on it all.

‘I don’t know what is a ‘crazy’ offer, because everything is relative.

‘The simple logic is: are you going to touch into next year’s money, the TV money? Some clubs will, some won’t. I am not going to suggest what we are.

‘But most important is not to put the club at risk.

‘With the relegation last time when we had no contract security, we had major problems. This time, we have much more security. We have signed all these great young players on long contacts, they will go down if we go down.

‘So we are a little bit more protected – but I am still not going to put the club at risk if I thought it was not right.’