Jermain Defoe may be on his way back to Tottenham Hotspur next week if the Premier League rule that Portsmouth striker Benjani Mwariwaru cannot sign for Manchester City after missing the transfer deadline on January 31st.
Benjani allegedly overslept, then missed a bus on his way to Manchester, and subsequently arrived too late for vital forms to have been submitted to the League. He may now have to stay at Fratton Park forever.
Defoe, only bought from Spurs because Portsmouth thought they were replacing Benjani, may be "taken back to the store" by Pompey manager Harry Redknapp, who is, naturally, uncomfortable with this kind of transfer dealing, after being investigated and arrested by police recently in similar circumstances.
Redknapp still has his receipt for Defoe, and envisages no problems at the White Hart Lane checkout, Tottenham operating a 16-day Argos-style returns policy. Spurs, however, may be forced to get rid of the unwanted ex-England striker at a knock-down price to whoever will take him in.
Benjani, meanwhile was, this morning, unavailable for comment. Last night, the African was apparently missing, presumed lost, after he attempted to return to the South coast on a train which was delayed due to heavy snow in the Midlands.
A man answering Benjani's description was seen leaving the train and heading off into woodland as the train waited at a signal near the town of Cheltenham.
Police say they aren't bothered.