Redknapp backs Spurs to go fourth

Updated: 22 April 2011 10:45 IST

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has called on his side to boost their Champions League qualification hopes by reclaiming fourth place with a victory over West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.

Redknapp backs Spurs to go fourth

London:

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has called on his side to boost their Champions League qualification hopes by reclaiming fourth place with a victory over West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.


The final qualification spot for next season's competition is currently held by Manchester City, who hold a two-point advantage over Tottenham following the north London club's 3-3 draw at home to Arsenal in midweek.

But City, who have a superior goal difference, are not in action until Monday, when they travel to Blackburn Rovers, and Redknapp knows they can put pressure on Roberto Mancini's men by taking over fourth place with a win against Albion.

"We want to do it. We will give it everything we have got to go fourth," Redknapp said.

"It's hard when clubs like City spend £150 million to finish above you, but if we don't make it we'll come back next year.

"If we make it, we make it and if we don't we will try again."

Spurs still have to face City at Eastlands on May 10 and Rafael van der Vaart is convinced Tottenham's performance against Arsenal, which saw them come back from 3-1 down, was proof they are able to finish in the top four again.

"The spirit here is fantastic and this feels a bit like a victory," Van der Vaart said.

"It was a great game, an open game and both teams wanted to win. We all enjoyed it, the speed was unbelievable.

"We fought to the end and we picked up a hard-fought point. But there is still a long way to go in this season, and now we have to focus on Saturday and do our best to get a win to keep up the pressure on Manchester City."

Van der Vaart scored twice against Arsenal, including a penalty to make it 3-3, and they were the first goals since February for the Player of the Season nominee.

"You always want to score goals but sometimes you need a bit of luck for the goals to come your way," he said.

"Maybe I haven't had that recently but it was great to be back among the goals again, especially in such a big game."

Gareth Bale, the man who did win the Players' Player of the Year gong, had to be substituted but Redknapp insisted it is not a serious problem.

"It shouldn't be too bad," he said. "He got a knock but he'll get plenty of them over the next few years."

West Bromwich will kick off at White Hart Lane in 11th place but are not quite assured of safety as only six points separate them from third-bottom Blackpool.

Albion manager Roy Hodgson could unleash an Arsenal player against Tottenham, although he has used on-loan Carlos Vela only sparingly until now.

Albion coach Michael Appleton confirmed that the Mexico striker had impressed as a substitute in last week's 3-1 home defeat by Chelsea.

"We were delighted with his 15 or 20 minutes on Saturday, he said. "He looks sharp in training and he is a player who can play in two or three different positions.

"I'd like to think we can be a little more clever than we were in the first half on Saturday and Carlos comes into that category.

"I'm sure he will be in the manager's thoughts quite heavily. He has made an impact when he has come on."



Topics : Football Tottenham Hotspur
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