TRANSFER UPDATE: McCann wants his men to chase glory not money

Erhun Oztumer (left) and George Moncur. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.
Erhun Oztumer (left) and George Moncur. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

New manager Grant McCann will only sign players who are more interested in the future of Peterborough United than hard cash.

McCann was speaking for the first time since midfield play­maker Erhun Oztumer left the club for League One rivals Walsall.

Ryan Tafazolli (left) with Grant McCann. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

Ryan Tafazolli (left) with Grant McCann. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

When Oztumer initially signed for Posh in June, 2014 he was offered a two­-year deal with a one­-year option which would generate a 66% pay rise if taken up.

McCann admitted Posh eventually offered a lower weekly wage, but as part of a new two­-year deal rather than one year.

Oztumer’s reluctance to agree prompted Posh not to stand in the way of a move to Walsall.

McCann said: “I like Erhun as a person and a player. He would have played a big part for us next season. We offered him a new deal, admittedly on lower money than we had originally offered, but over two years rather than one.

Gaby Zakuani has held talks with Northampton. Photo: Alan Storer.

Gaby Zakuani has held talks with Northampton. Photo: Alan Storer.

“But I want players who are committed to the long­-term prosperity of Peterborough United rather than their own desire to make money.

“In my opinion Erhun was only looking short-­term and when I heard of his demands my first instinct was to cut him loose.

“I compare that with the attitude of (new signing) Ryan Tafazolli. He was all set to go and talk to Blackburn after agreeing terms with us.

“I told him if he did our offer would be off the table and he decided to sign for us.

“We have a chairman at this club who is one of the best at looking after his players should they be successful and win promotion.”

McCann also insists Posh have transfer targets every bit as good as midfielder George Moncur.

And they might arrive at the ABAX Stadium sooner rather than later. McCann wants them on board before the squad travel to Portugal for a training camp on Monday (June 27).

Moncur turned down the chance of playing for Posh in League One next season in favour of Championship football with Barnsley.

Both clubs had agreed a £500,000 fee with Moncur’s former club Colchester.

McCann said: “It’s a disappointment not to land a quality player like George, but we have other transfer targets who are every bit as good as him.

“The chairman and Barry Fry did everything they could to get the deal done, but at the end of the day Barnsley were able to offer more money.

“That’s football. These things happen so we move on.

“It’s great for me that the chairman was prepared to back my judgement with such a big bid and I am hopeful we will announce the arrival of a couple of new players in the next few days.

“We would have signed a couple more even if George had signed.

“I want our business done early if possible, although it’s not been easy with players and agents taking holidays. We also need to get players out.

“The new season starts tomorrow (June 24) as far as I’m concerned.

“I want my squad in place as soon as possible as I want to use the time between now and the start of the season effectively. We will bond and we will get used to each other.

“I’m happy with the business we have done so far. I expect to sign a couple of players before we fly out to Portugal. If not we will fly them out to join us.”

McCann hopes to get goalkeeper Ben Alnwick and right-back Michael Smith to accept new deals next week.

“They both know they are a big part of my plans for next season,” McCann added.

Posh have also been linked with a move for young Barnet striker Matthew Stevens.

Posh are keen to off­load transfer­-listed players Jack Payne and Kgosi Nthle. Neither of whom will travel to the pre­s-eason training camp in Portugal next week. Payne has been away on honeymoon.

Centre­-back Gaby Zakuani, another player to be released by Posh, has held talks with local rivals Northampton.