Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Premier League

Harry Redknapp insists there will not be a summer exodus at Tottenham


Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp insists there will not be an exodus of top players from White Hart Lane if his team fail to qualify for the Champions League.

Spurs' recent slump in form - they have one just one of their last nine Barclays Premier League games - has seen them drop to fifth in the table, with Chelsea's progression to the Champions League final meaning even fourth may not be good enough to reach Europe's premier club competition next term.

The north London club last summer knocked back several bids from Chelsea for playmaker Luka Modric, while winger Gareth Bale has been linked with a summer switch to Barcelona.


But Redknapp does not expect the duo to be asking to leave at the end of the season, come what may.

"No, I don't," he said on Sky Sports News. "When they came to the club, Tottenham weren't in the Champions League, and were nowhere near getting in the Champions League.

"They play for Tottenham. They're at a great club. There's no reason they should want to leave. If we don't make it this year we'll try again next year. There's not too many clubs they could go to better than Tottenham.

"Gareth Bale and Luka Modric have both signed long-term contracts. Gareth has had a fantastic time for young player at Tottenham. He needs to stay at Tottenham a few more years yet and keep developing.

"We've progressed so much in the last four years, we've got to keep that going and push on even more in the table and look to win a Premier League. It's not impossible."

Chelsea secured a remarkable 2-2 draw against Barca at the Nou Camp last night - despite losing captain John Terry to a first-half red card - to oust the holders 3-2 on aggregate.

Redknapp believes interim manager Roberto Di Matteo now has a great chance of getting the job full-time.

"It's an unbelievable achievement," the Spurs boss said. "You just can't put it into words, how good it was. To play against 10 men, 2-0 down, and come back shows fantastic quality. And in the end they deserved it. They rode their luck but when you've got 10 men playing against Barcelona you need all the luck you can get.

"Great credit to the manager. Robbie's done a great job there.

"He must have a very good chance [of getting permanent job], a great chance. He's done a fantastic job since he took over.

"That's up to the chairman of Chelsea, but he couldn't have done any more than what he's done. He's had a fantastic run and he's a nice guy as well. I hope he gets the job."

If Chelsea win the May 19 final against Real Madrid or Bayern Munich, they would be allowed to defend the trophy even if they finished outside the top four, with the fourth-placed team missing out.

But Redknapp will not let his players be distracted by that possibility as they look to win their final four games - starting at home to Blackburn on Sunday.

"We've got to make sure we finish fourth or third, make sure we're in a position to qualify," he said. "If we don't, it doesn't matter what happens.

"It's still wide open - Arsenal, Chelsea, ourselves, Newcastle - it's still any two from four."

"We've got to go on a good run now.

"If we pull off good results in these last four games we'll be in the Champions League and I'm very confident we'll do that."