Redknapp eases back on the crest of a wave
Tottenham manager returns after heart op with scarcely a stressful moment or cross word
Tuesday 22 November 2011
Three tortuous weeks away from the touchline must have seemed like an eternity to Harry Redknapp, the Tottenham manager, who returned to the dugout last night after undergoing heart surgery. "I feel great to be back," he said before kick-off. "I'm lucky to have great staff here and they've done most of the build-up for tonight." Here's how he got on:
Before kick-off A calm and relaxed-looking Redknapp enters the ground, shaking hands and joking with the stewards. Then, before the whistle he is warmly embraced by his opposite number, Alex McLeish.
11 minutes Up from his chair for the first time as Emmanuel Adebayor heads a great chance wide from close range. Following every kick, Redknapp meets the cross with an imaginary header that probably would have made a better connection than the Togolese striker if he had kept his eye on the ball.
25 min A rendition from the White Hart Lane faithful of "Harry Redknapp's Blue and White Army" lifts Redknapp from his chair and the crowd cheer even louder. He has so far left most of his remonstrating with the officials to first-team coach Joe Jordan. Redknapp is then seen to pass on advice to Aaron Lennon.
40 min As Adebayor scores his second of the game and makes it 2-0, Redknapp stands up to applaud his team's dominant performance.
54 min A shake of the head, possibly a mouthed swear word, and an angry turn in the technical area as Rafael van der Vaart spoils a great chance to put the game out of Aston Villa's reach, just seconds after a glaring Adebayor miss for his hat-trick.
65 min After more chances to score a third go begging, Redknapp assumes his usual touchline position with hands firmly in pockets.
73 min Back sitting in the dugout with assistant manager Kevin Bond.
76 min "Harry give us a wave" the fans sing, and Redknapp duly responds with both the requested wave and a clap.
90 min Hugs Luka Modric as the Croat is substituted to a huge ovation from the White Hart Lane crowd.
Final whistle Handshake with McLeish after the comfortable victory.
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