Redknapp cool about European chase

Updated: 06 May 2011 11:08 IST

If Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp regards the upcoming two fixtures as key to his side's hopes of qualifying for Europe, he is not letting on.

Redknapp cool about European chase

London:

If Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp regards the upcoming two fixtures as key to his side's hopes of qualifying for Europe, he is not letting on.


Redknapp's side host Blackpool on Saturday knowing a loss will put a large dent in their ambitions of qualifying for the Europa League, let alone the Champions League.

Europe's elite competition is all but out of Tottenham's reach, but they have an opportunity of increasing their chances next Tuesday against Manchester City, who currently occupy the coveted fourth spot in the Premier League.

But although Redknapp has enjoyed the adventure of rubbing shoulders with Europe's top clubs this season, he is also aware that to be a regular Champions League contender takes time.

"We're starting to be up there with the best of them," he said. "The club can't say 'we haven't made the Champions League' and pull up stumps and throw in the towel in."

"The future is fantastic, there are some great players and with the addition of one or two in the summer I think we can win the championship eventually."

Redknapp has two injury problems hanging over him ahead of the Blackpool game, with Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Tom Huddlestone injury doubts.

Assou-Ekotto is out with a hamstring injury suffered against West Brom on April 23 and Vedran Corluka has been deputising at left-back with varying degrees of success.

Huddlestone is still suffering from the after-effects of surgery on an ankle problem which kept him out for six months this season.

The pair are also unlikely to be fit for next week's showdown with City, although the way Brazilian Sandro has filled in for midfielder Huddlestone has impressed Redknapp and other members of the squad.

Sandro scored Spurs opener against Chelsea last week, before Frank Lampard controversially equalised with a strike that appeared to not cross the line.

"Sandro is a good player and I like him a lot, a young lad with a bright future," Redknapp said. "He really covered some ground at Chelsea, he worked his socks off for us in there."

Captain Michael Dawson added: "He's been amazing since he's come in. He wins balls, gets in amongst it and we all know now he can score goals after that strike at the weekend. Everyone was delighted for him."

Blackpool, meanwhile are after a win to keep their bid for Premier League survival alive.

Ian Holloway believes his Blackpool side can pull off the shock results they need to keep their top-flight status in their hands.

The Seasiders are only outside the relegation zone on the difference of a single goal with three matches remaining.

After the trip to White Hart Lane, they host Bolton before heading to champions-elect Manchester United on the final day of the season.

They have won just once in their last 15 Premier League matches after a flying start to the campaign.

"We've just got to be at our best and hope they're not at their best," Holloway said. "We've proved that we can upset a few and showed signs in the last two games getting back to our best and their season isn't where they'd want it to be."

"They want to be in the top four and their fans will be turning up expecting them to beat us so that might work in our favour."

"My lads have been outstanding. There's a hardly a game where they haven't acquitted themselves well and given ourselves a chance."

"Everybody laughed at us at the start of the season but no-one is laughing now. We need five more points - one win and two draws, who knows?"

Holloway has no new injury worries and expects James Beattie to recover from illness to feature at Spurs.



Topics : Football
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