Holland fee accepted

Last updated : 04 June 2003 By FootyMAD
Ipswich chairman David Sheepshanks confirmed Pompey's offer for the Republic of Ireland international had been accepted because of the Tractor Boys financial difficulties.

"Most regrettably and reluctantly we have been obliged to consider the transfer opportunities for our much admired and outstanding captain Matt Holland," he told the clubs official website. 

"For any club outside the Premiership, it is not just about transfer fees but also the size of wage commitments.

"Matt Holland was not on huge money by Premier League standards, but nevertheless on a level that is simply unaffordable in the First Division.

"The state of the transfer market is such that while there is interest in a player of Matt's pedigree, the very best fee that we have been able to obtain is £750,000 from Portsmouth.

"This is particularly tough to digest when a year ago much higher values were being spoken of, and indeed in August 2002 we agreed a sale to Aston Villa for £4m.

"It is now up to Matt to discuss personal terms with Portsmouth. If he decides to go he will be a huge loss but by the same token we have every confidence in Joe Royle being able to replace Matt and build his Ipswich Town side for the future."