It seems incredible but I truly believe that Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp could just be coming under a bit of pressure. When he took over the Tottenham job they were in a total mess. Now he seems to have developed the club so that they are in, well, a total mess!
His first few weeks at the club were a great success. He seemed to have waved a magic wand and worked a miracle. Before he arrived Tottenham were bottom of the league with two points from eight games. Then he took the team to relative safety with five wins in nine games. Now, again, they have slipped deep into trouble with no win in five games. Wednesday night very nearly saw them embarrassingly lose a 4-1 lead to Burnley in the Carling Cup semi-final.
The one thing that has become a constant in RedknappÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s after match interviews and comments is his very negative comments about his own players and the criticism of the previous manager. His attack on his players seems a very strange way to try to motivate his team and develop a good spirit, which are surely a major part of his job.
Now, in my opinion, Redknapp has launched an attack on the clubÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s fans. He says that he has little interest in their FA Cup game at Manchester United and will field a very weak team (some would say, Ã¢â‚¬Ëœno change there!Ã¢â‚¬Ëœ)
The reason I say this is an attack on the fans is that thousands of them will have paid a great deal of money to buy tickets for the game and arrange travel and possibly accommodation as well. These are real fans. These are the people who really matter in the game. These are the people who are completely disregarded in circumstances like this.
Redknapp says about the Cup game at Old Trafford,
“We’ve got some tough games, we’ve a game at Man United that really is so secondary to me now. We’re in a relegation battle and I can’t risk Jamie O’Hara, Jonathan Woodgate and Michael Dawson at Old Trafford. I have to go to Old Trafford with that group of players that we had tonight. If Alex (Ferguson) is listening, I’m really going to send a real mish-mash team up there. I hope it doesn’t upset the fans, but we played extra time and we’re out on our feet a little bit. The lads who didn’t play tonight will play and I’m going to rest the key players who played tonight because I can’t afford to lose any more to injuries.”
His latest rant about the quality of his squad included these comments,
“We need stronger players in here because we’re not mentally or physically strong enough. It’s a challenge and it can’t get any worse. When I took over we had two points from eight games but Stoke (on Tuesday) is a massive game for us. This is a football club that has been put together by I don’t know who and I don’t know how. It’s a mish-mash of players with people playing where they want to play. It’s scary.Ã¢â‚¬Â
About some of the players who had a rare outing at Burnley he said,
“I had to play a few lads who hadn’t played too much and they didn’t do themselves a lot of good really to be honest with you. The players should be fighting for their lives to stay at a great football club like this. Their future is on the line, they need to perform to stay at the club.”
I wondered if it was only me who found the words and actions of Harry Redknapp a little surprising. I mean, did he accept no responsibility whatever for the tactical plan he produced for his team at Burnley?
A look at the BBC message board showed that I am not alone. Of the hundreds of comments it was difficult to find any in defence of the manager. Yes, the Tottenham fans are all upset with some of the players, but they cannot understand the constant criticism in public coming from the boss.
The following are just a few examples of the type of comments.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I’ve always been a Harry Redknapp fan but recently he’s started to get on my nerves. He never seems to stop talking about bringing in new players. Surely one of the main roles of a manager is to manage what you’ve got. That should be the first job – to work with the team and make them a better unit by motivation, training, etc. There’s some good young players in that Spurs side and all they need is some self believe. They aren’t going to get that if Harry is constantly harping on about bringing in other players to replace them. Your a manager for gods sake – now manage.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“As far as Harry Redknapp goes, I am surprised he is so overly critical of his team. Considering how he developed Frank Lampard, Joe Cole, Michael Carrick, Jermaine Defoe, Rio Ferdinand and co at West Ham, he is not being more supportive to the likes of Bale, Huddlestone, Alnwick, Gunter and O’Hara.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I do not think Harry is helping sort the problem out by criticising Darren ‘my missus could score that’ Bent and constantly saying the team is not good enough. True, he may have a point, but he needs to stand up for these players.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I have to say I agree with the criticisms of Redknapp on this post. I was thrilled to see him in and Ramos out, but recently I think he’s proven a bit out-of-his depth with Spurs. The over-the-top criticisms of the players cant be doing the team any good. He is doing nothing to build morale at the club and he’s starting to feel like a loser to me.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Is anyone else getting a bit tired of Redknapp bemoaning his squad? Nobody forced him to up sticks and join Spurs, and he knew exactly what was there when he joined. He’s had three weeks to bring people in yet all he seems to do it complain about how it’s not his fault and the previous managers are to blame for leaving him a weak squad to inherit. I didn’t hear any of these complains when Spurs starting winning a few games immediately after he joined, but now he is losing, it’s someone else’s fault entirely.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Redknapp is getting on my nerves too. I’m also fed up of people (and Redknapp) saying spurs aren’t where they “should be.” What does that mean? They are exactly where a disorganised side with players who can’t play together should be – in a relegation fight! True, he does have one or two world class players but they need to stand up and be counted but, at the moment, they don’t.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“It would be nice to see Harry Redknapp take a share of the responsibility for that performance last night. If his tactics were just to hold what you’ve got for 90 minutes (and it certainly appeared that way), then maybe he was a little at fault. Publicly criticising his players while refusing to take his share of the blame isn’t doing anyone any good but then this is Harry Redknapp- he can do no wrong.Ã¢â‚¬Â
It seems that at least some of the fans are very unhappy. I would guess that several of the players are also pretty unhappy about the way they are being criticised by the boss. In private, yes, the manager should make his feelings very clear. In public? No. You donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t often hear any of the managers currently in the top half of the table criticising their own players do you?
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