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Redknapp set to strengthen wasteful Tottenham

SoccerNews in English Premier League 19 Jan 2009

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Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp outlined his need for new players in the January transfer window after his team missed a hatful of chances in a 1-1 draw against his old club Portsmouth.

Darren Bent was the worst offender, heading wide a golden opportunity to win Sunday’s match where the point Spurs gained was at least good enough to take them off the bottom of the English Premier League table and out of the relegation zone, albeit on goal difference.

West Ham striker Craig Bellamy is near the top of Redknapp’s shopping list, but the Tottenham boss is pessimistic about the Wales forward’s chances of making a move across London.

“I’ve not given up, but it’s going to be difficult,” Redknapp said. “I think Manchester City are in for him and if they are then you’ve got no chance because they can just outbid you.”

The renowned transfer wheeler-dealer has attracted criticism this week from both Sunderland boss Ricky Sbragia, over his pursuit of forward Kenwyne Jones, and Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate, regarding his attempt to lure winger Stewart Downing to White Hart Lane.

England international Downing had handed in a transfer request but Redknapp now accepts he is likely to stay at the north-east club.

One transfer target who looks more likely to come to the north London side is Wigan’s Honduras midfielder Wilson Palacios.

“I like Palacios. I think he is a tremendous player and the chairman is talking to Wigan,” Redknapp confirmed.

Tottenham may also look to strengthen their defence after injury-jinxed centre-back and captain Ledley King suffered a hamstring injury against Pompey, which, according to his manager, will keep him out for a “long time”.

Brazilian Heurelho Gomez started in goal despite being injured, indicating the manager’s lack of trust in his reserve goalkeepers and highlighting another area where he believes reinforcements are required.

“We need another good goalkeeper and if I’d had confidence in the Spanish ‘keeper (Cesar Sanchez) then I would’ve played him,” revealed Redknapp, who joined Spurs from Portsmouth in October after Juande Ramos was sacked.

Tony Adams, Redknapp’s successor as Portsmouth, also expressed his desire to bring in new players, particularly after the departure of striker Jermain Defoe to Tottenham.

Rumours have been rife that he is on the verge of bringing Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant to Fratton Park, but the ex-Arsenal and England captain explained his signing was far from a formality.

“A deal has been done with Liverpool but if he doesn’t want to come then we will leave him because I only want people who want to play for us,” Adams said.

He added this was why he let Defoe, who joined Portsmouth from Tottenham, leave.

Adams was unrepentant despite the former West Ham striker’s equaliser which robbed Pompey, themselves only three points above the bottom three, of a much-needed victory.

“I need a group of players that are all pulling together and if someone doesn’t want to be at your football club then you need to move them along quickly,” said Adams who at least had the consolation of seeing David Nugent score his first goal for the club.

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