England talk will not distract Tottenham insists Harry Redknapp


Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp insists talk of him becoming the next England manager will not distract him or his players from their tilt at the Barclays Premier League title.

The Football Assocation are looking for a new national coach following Fabio Capello's resignation and Redknapp is the clear favourite to fill the role after his excellent work at White Hart Lane.

After just over three years at the helm, the 64-year-old has taken the club from rock bottom to third in the table and there is now a real possibility that Spurs can win their first championship since 1961.

Redknapp may have spent the last four days halfway across the world in Dubai, but he has been unable to escape the paper talk and public clamour for him to replace Capello.

The former Portsmouth and Southampton manager would be interested in taking the job but the FA appear to be willing to wait until the end of this month, or even the end of the season, before making their move.

Until that time comes, Redknapp insists he remains totally focused on his role as Tottenham manager.

"It is not a distraction, not at all," Redknapp said.

"I have just been thinking about Stevenage all week.

"My focus has to be on trying to get Tottenham as high as I can in the table.

"I can't start thinking about anything else really."

Spurs hammered Newcastle 5-0 after three days of intense speculation about Redknapp's future last weekend and he thinks that proves his players have also not being distracted by the speculation.

"The players came out, got on with it and played fantastic against Newcastle so it didn't distract anybody," he added.

"The whole team were outstanding. The way we played was top class and that was important."

Redknapp maintains that there has been no approach from the FA over replacing Capello and admits the decision to leave Tottenham, if he has to make it, will be a hard one given what he has achieved with the Londoners.

He said: "If you were managing a team that was struggling and you thought 'this lot aint too clever', it certainly would be different, but I am at a great club with good players and I haven't got any problems here.

"I get on well with the chairman. We have a good relationship, probably as good a relationship as he has had with any manager.

"We haven't got any problems here and at the moment there nothing else has happened.

"I've not spoken to anybody. I'm not going to rule myself out but I've not been ruled in either."

The FA Cup probably represents Spurs' best chance of winning a trophy this term.

Tottenham are the highest ranked team left in the competition, which they have not won since 1991, following the exit of both Manchester sides.

"We want to win the FA cup this year," said Redknapp, who lifted the trophy with Portsmouth four years ago.

"It would be great for the club. We are in there with a big chance and we have a team as good as any left in there."

Tottenham are expected to coast through to the last eight with a win over Stevenage on Sunday, but Redknapp insists his team will not be taking the npower League One side lightly.

"It will be a tough game," he said.

"They will be up for it, but we are a good team as well and if we play as we can we should win, but we know we will have to be at our best to do so."

Despite facing Arsenal and Manchester United in their following fixtures, Redknapp insists he will field a strong side for Sunday's game at Broadhall Way.

He is likely to hand 34-year-old Ryan Nelsen his full Spurs debut, however.

"The lads have said Ryan Nelsen has trained great this week," Redknapp said.

"I have always been a big fan of his. He is a great competitor.

"He is a player I'd like to get a game in to."


Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk