Pards Apologises To Palace

ALAN Pardew has apologised to friend and Crystal Palace manager Iain Dowie over the speculation surrounding the future of Palace striker Andrew Johnson.

The Hammers boss is openly in the hunt for a striker during the January transfer window, but conceded that he should not have mentioned Johnson by name.

He said: "There are lots of names being thrown at me every week and this was just a misunderstanding.

"I got asked a question - would I be interested in Andrew Johnson?

"I said I would be interested in any quality player who becomes available in the window.

"I did make a mistake in mentioning Andrew Johnson's name - which I shouldn't have and I apologise to Iain and everyone at Palace if I have upset them.

"I know Iain very well and I certainly don't want to upset or disrupt his plans for the season.

"But at the same token, I am looking to make West Ham United a better team.

"Everyone knows I am in the market and with the very good base I have got here I am only looking for top quality now.

"Bobby Zamora, Teddy Sheringham and Marlon Harewood have all been terrific for us this season. It is a great trio for us and it will be hard to find someone better than what we already have at the Club.

"But that is our aim, because there is certainly no point bringing in a player who does not have the quality to enhance what you have already got.

"We are just interested in a quality player that becomes available, whoever that may be."