Football continues to surprise, and the sacking of Harry Redknapp from the manager’s job at Spurs is no exception. Though Spurs may have failed to qualify for the Champions League, and suffered poor form towards the end of the season, there is no doubting that Redknapp had got Spurs playing some fantastic football.
When Harry joined Spurs in October 2008 they were four points adrift at the bottom of the Premier League. But Redknapp rescued their season spectacularly, getting them to 8th place by the end and also to the League Cup final where they were unlucky to lose on penalties to Manchester United. The following season Spurs got their best ever Premier League finish of 4th place meaning that they qualified for the Champions League.
…memorable night at White Hart Lane…
In 2010-11, Harry took Spurs on a fantastic run to the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Who could forget that memorable night at White Hart Lane when Spurs beat Inter Milan 3-1? The chants of ‘Taxi for Maicon!’ as Gareth Bale tormented the Brazilian right-back incessantly will live long in the memory. Though they eventually went out 5-0 on aggregate to Real Madrid, Spurs played some beautiful football and that was down in no small way to Harry Redknapp.
In the season just finished, Spurs at one stage looked like title contenders in January, but they slumped to finish 4th. Harry had the drama of his court case to endure and, after Fabio Capello resigned from the England job in February, the pressure of being the media favourite and ‘people’s choice’ to take on perhaps the toughest challenge in football.
…difficult for him to agree…
Perhaps it was this that led to his downfall at Spurs? He admitted that he would have left Spurs had he been offered the England job, and it proved difficult for him to agree a new contract with chairman Daniel Levy which appears to be the main reason for his departure. But the disappointment of losing out on a Champions League place seems also to be a factor.
Harry remains one of the most popular managers in the game and, after working for the BBC at Euro 2012, he should be in demand for another manager’s job. Has he missed his chance to manage England? Time will tell, but the attractive football Harry oversaw at Spurs would be a welcome improvement to the England team of the future.