Redknapp and Roeder square up again

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The Independent Online

Portsmouth's Harry Redknapp was unconcerned about renewing rivalries with Glenn Roeder despite the Newcastle manager's criticism of his predecessor at West Ham five years ago.

Roeder was far from complimentary despite the squad he inherited from Redknapp at Upton Park in August 2001 containing Michael Carrick, Jermain Defoe, Paolo Di Canio, Joe Cole, Fredi Kanouté, Glen Johnson and Stuart Pearce. It was good enough to finish seventh in the Premiership in Roeder's first season, even though relegation followed a year later. Since then, the relationship has been cool, and the pair meet today when Pompey visit St James' Park.

Redknapp said: "I gave Glenn a job coaching at West Ham after meeting him in London when he was out of work. But he said a few things after I left and he's been known to do that, hasn't he? I left him a fantastic squad, but when they started losing games I suppose somebody had to cop it. I don't really want to get involved. I don't think there are any real problems now.

"It wouldn't bother me if there were. It wouldn't make any difference to my life. But Glenn has another very good squad at Newcastle. They have spent a fortune up there and while they have done well in the Uefa Cup and the Carling Cup I can't believe they are so low in the table; I think they will finish much higher."

Roeder's first game in charge last February was a 2-0 home win over Ports-mouth, and the Magpies claimed a 3-0 victory in the Carling Cup last month. But despite progress in Europe and a hard-earned point at Arsenal last week, the manager's job remains far from safe.

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