Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp admits he was surprised that none of their Premier League rivals made an effort to sign Scott Parker in the summer.
The England international has been the catalyst to Tottenham's superb form of late, revelling in a midfield that contains the lavishingly gifted Luka Modric and the roaming Rafael van der Vaart. Despite being last season's Football Writers' Player of the Year and regularly displaying his obvious pedigree for club and country, Parker had relatively few suitors prior to his arrival at White Hart Lane in the summer.
The former West Ham United talisman had been linked with Liverpool and Chelsea briefly yet Tottenham's interest was undoubtedly the strongest, and Redknapp suggests the lack of attention from the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal, who have had perceived weaknesses in their midfield this season, surprised the Spurs manager.
"When you think about it, he was sitting there (at West Ham) all summer." The Tottenham Hotspur boss told the club's official website.
"He could have been nicked by anybody. I don't know how somebody else didn't sign him,"
"I don't know (how no-one else signed him). It took three or four months to get him but we got him in the end and we are delighted to have him."
Since Parker's £5 million arrival, Tottenham have dropped just two points during a nine match unbeaten run, and the tenacious midfielder's form has seemingly revitalised Luka Modric's appetite to remain at White Hart Lane.
The diminutive Croatian appeared to be on the cusp of a move to Chelsea during the summer following a spate of lucrative offers, and although Daniel Levy admirably refused the advances of their London rival, the player's form and at times attitutde had been questioned. Since Parker's arrival at the club, Modric appears settled and more importantly back to his imperious best and he acknowledges the former West Ham United star has been a huge part of the club's recent revival.
"We needed some fresh blood in our team," Modric told The Daily Mail.
"Scotty and Manu came in. They are great players. They have improved our squad a lot and you can see that on the pitch.
"Now we are in third we have hard games coming up so we just have to keep fighting for each other and keep this momentum up."