Date:Wednesday May 31 2006
Leeds boss Kevin Blackwell claims Aaron Lennon's Elland Road wages were so high that he accepted less money to join Tottenham.
The 19-year-old winger hopes to be on World Cup duty in the coming weeks.
He joined Tottenham for £1million after spending a season in the Championship with Leeds.
Leeds found they could no longer afford to keep Lennon, who despite being 18 when he left the club was among their big earners.
Blackwell: 'He actually took a wage cut to go to Tottenham from Leeds.
'The contract that he had was so prohibitive to Leeds - it came from the Premiership days - that there was no way we could afford to keep him.
'The international stage doesn't yet really know about Aaron just yet.
'He also has the ability to play up the middle, such is the pace and ability of the lad.
'I don't think going into the World Cup you can go in with a load of inexperienced players, so David Beckham has a major role to play.
'But time catches up with us all and we all have sometimes to look over our shoulders.'
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