Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Redknapp anxious for Bale return

Harry Redknapp has confirmed Gareth Bale is a chance to return for Tottenham’s Champions League clash with Real Madrid on Tuesday.

Bale watched on from the sidelines as his team-mates drew 0-0 with Wigan in the English Premier League on Saturday as he continues his recovery from a hamstring injury.

But Redknapp said the Welsh winger was a good chance to return against Real Madrid, although he was less hopeful about defender William Gallas’ prospects.

“Gareth is okay, he has got a chance. He should be fit for the game,” Redknapp said.

“As for Gallas he is struggling. Unless there is a big improvement in his knee I doubt if he will be fit.”

“We are going to need pace in wide positions if we plan to hit Real Madrid on the counter-attack. That is what we have been doing all season in Europe.”

The draw against Wigan on Saturday could mean Tottenham miss out on Champions League football next season, with Spurs now three points behind fourth-placed Manchester City.

Redknapp admitted it was a blow and said his side would have to improve before Tuesday’s crunch match.

“We did not play well. That is not the way we normally play. It was one of those days,” Redknapp said.

“It is very difficult to win matches in this division. West Brom beat Liverpool, Chelsea couldn’t win at Stoke and West Ham were beating Manchester United for most of the game.”

“I am sure the Real Madrid scout has gone home scared stiff. I did not enjoy the game at all.”

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez remained upbeat after the match, despite his side remaining at the foot of the table, still two points from safety.

“I could not be more proud of my players than I am today. We showed how much we have improved and how far we have come,” Martinez said.

“I felt that off the ball we were outstanding. My players were tactically fantastic.”

“The whole team kept Spurs very quiet and I felt we edged a very good game of football.”

“It was just a pity that we couldn’t get the goal that would have given us the three points this performance deserved. It is a also a shame the season is not starting now for us.”

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