Date: 15th February 2007 at 8:36am
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News creeping out of Pittodrie is that Zander Diamond was again the subject of transfer bids during the last window. The teams involved remain undisclosed and will probably remain so as Calderwood tries to repair the confidence and focus of the 21 year old.

Previously, in 2004, rumours persisted that three Spanish clubs, one of which was strongly considered to be Atletico Madrid all wanted to buy Zander. There was also allegedly interest from some English clubs as well and paper talk that Celtic wanted the then Scotland Under 21 captain as Zander became the hottest property in the SPL but Jimmy Calderwood said at the time ‘I don’t think it would be advantageous for him to move just now.

Personally, it has been great to see guys like Jaap Stam and Sami Hyypia (whom he coached in Holland) move on to better things and I’ve no doubt it will happen for Zander too.

His advisor is Billy McNeill and I’d like to think he’ll be telling him to stay here for now.

I’m sure the directors would love to get a daft offer for him, but I want to keep him here because he has been magnificent and is one of the biggest talents in our game.’

The 6`2″ defender has only started 8 games this season as injury, form and the emergence of Andrew Considine has kept him out of the starting eleven but Jimmy Calderwood has given him a huge vote of confidence and reassured him that he`s very much in the future plans of the club.

Calderwood said: ‘There were offers for Zander during the last transfer window but I didn’t want to sell him.

I told him here wasn’t a hope in hell he’d be going. He will be here after the summer and hopefully well beyond that.

I still rate him very highly but he knows he’s going through a difficult time.

Youngsters can go through phases like this but ability never leaves a player. And in my first season here he was absolutely brilliant.

I could have sold him for a lot of money after three months in this job but I never even considered it, and the same applied to the latest offers.

Every player makes mistakes but Zander was unlucky because his were highlighted.

He’s very hard on himself and he analyses videos to see where it went wrong for him.

I feel he’s on his own case too often but I’d rather have the type of lad who cares than one who doesn’t.

We’re partly responsible for the dip in his game. We tried to change him because we encourage our defenders to get forward and attack space.

It was all new to him and he focused too much on the offensive side of his game.

He’s suffered a lot through injuries and his frustration is responsible for his poor disciplinary record. His timing went and his confidence was affected.

Zander’s job now is to get back to basics and become the good defender I know he is.

He’s back to being the cheeky Zander that I knew when I took over and that’s a real step forward.

He faces competition from Andrew Considine and Karim Touzani for his place but he isn’t the sort to shirk a challenge.’