Ashton move made at cup game

West Ham's bid to lure Dean Ashton away from Carrow Road got under way immediately after the FA Cup third round tie between the two sides, Neil Doncaster revealed yesterday.

West Ham's bid to lure Dean Ashton away from Carrow Road got under way immediately after the FA Cup third round tie between the two sides, Neil Doncaster revealed yesterday.

City's chief executive was approached by his opposite number Paul Aldridge who declared his club's interest - and later slapped in a £6m bid for the striker.

Here is Doncaster's chronological guide to how City's record transfer deal came about:

“We first received contact from West Ham on the evening of the FA Cup game between the two sides on January 7,” he said. “Their managing director Paul Aldridge came to see me after the game and expressed an interest in buying Dean.

“I told him that we had no interest in selling. Later that evening West Ham contacted us again and made a bid of £6m for Dean.

“On Monday we declined that offer and later in the day the bid was raised to £7m, based on a guaranteed £6m plus £1m of contingencies.

Most Read

“Negotiations then continued over the next two weeks, particularly surrounding a sell-on percentage. At one point during that process West Ham's interest in the player became apparent in the media which wasn't helpful.

“From that moment onwards, after Dean made it clear than he wanted to go, all we could do was make the best of the situation we found ourselves in - and achieve the best possible price.”