Darren Bent was told to get off Tottenham plane bound for China when he learned of Sunderland transfer February 3, 2021 – Posted in: Soccer
Darren Bent has opened up on the time he was told to get off a plane by Tottenham which was set for a pre-season trip to China in order to secure a move to Sunderland.
Bent was told by then manager Harry Redknapp that he was surplus to requirements at Spurs in the summer of 2009 and was free to leave the club.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, a notoriously ruthless and successful businessman, was only prepared to let Bent go on his his terms – which led to a high-profile dispute between Bent and himself.
The talkSPORT favourite expressed his displeasure on social media at the manner at which he believed Levy was conducting the deal and issued a foul-mouthed rant on Twitter in a bid to force through the move.
Bent said at the time: “Seriously getting p***** off now,” before later sending the message: “Why can’t anything be simple. It’s so frustrating hanging round doing jack s***.
“Do I wanna go Hull City NO. Do I wanna go Stoke NO. Do I wanna go Sunderland YES, so stop f****** around, Levy. Sunderland are not the problem in the slightest.”
And on Tuesday’s talkSPORT Breakfast, the former Spurs striker revealed all – and more – about that interesting chapter in his career.
“At the end of my second season at Spurs when I knew Harry [Redknapp] didn’t want me even though Harry played me towards the end of that campaign,” Bent explained.
“It was obvious he wanted me to move on as I think he wanted to bring in Peter Crouch, so I thought [to myself] that’s fair enough.
“We were scheduled to go to China on pre-season on the plane and all day I’m going there’s no point me going because I’m going to sign for Sunderland.
“Even Harry was saying that’s right, that’s right, but Daniel [Levy] said to me you’ve got to go.”
He continued: “So we get on the plane now the door shuts and then the chief executive comes running back and he said Darren you can get off the plane now I think a deal has been done.
“So I’m sitting on the plane and the doors are shut and then they tell me I think he deal he’s been so you don’t have to come to China.
“The deal did not get done until they got back, so I sent that tweet out you know about Daniel Levy – I can’t really say on air what I said.
“This was the frustration I thought the deal would have been done. Two weeks later I’m sitting at my house doing nothing as I can’t go up to Sunderland as I’m not allowed and I can’t train.
“So for two weeks I’m sitting there in limbo because Daniel Levy is picking the bones out of this deal.”