Last January, Harry Redknapp rebuilt Tottenham Hotspur with five astute signings but this time around he has warned Manchester City that all the answers to their problems cannot be solved by signing new players in the mid-season transfer window.
The Tottenham Hotspur manager faces Fulham today with his team in fifth place, two points behind Aston Villa. As Spurs try yet again to break into the big four, it will be City and their new manager Roberto Mancini who pose one of the biggest threats, especially if Sheikh Mansour permits the club to buy again in January.
Redknapp said Mancini would not necessarily find that all his problems were solved with more new players in January. "Manchester City are a one-off, there are not a lot of clubs with that type of money," Redknapp said. "In fact there is no one, they are quite unique with the man who owns the club but we have spent decent money and I am happy with the squad.
"Sometimes if you buy you can cause yourself more problems. The more players you have of that quality, the more difficult it becomes. The more players you've got walking around with the hump, and the more difficult it can be for you. I think what they [City] would probably do is if they agree to buy someone they'll probably have to shift a few out, because you end up over-loaded with them. And I think it can be a bigger problem, it can upset everything with too many."
The Spurs manager denied that he has an interest in Craig Bellamy although if the striker is as disaffected as has been suggested with the new City hierarchy – and a decent price could be obtained for either Roman Pavlyuchenko or Robbie Keane – then it would not be a difficult one to imagine. Redknapp tried to sign the player last January when Spurs were outbid by City.
"I talked to Peter Beardsley, up at Newcastle, when I was after him [Bellamy] before last season, and he said to me the worst thing Newcastle did was getting rid of him," Redknapp said. "He did well for West Ham, he's a winner, isn't he? He can be a bit of a nuisance, but he's a nuisance when you play against him.
"We gave it a real shot to get him. We couldn't have tried harder, but in the end Man City just came in and said: 'Get out the way, you're not going to get him because we'll blow you away.' That was always the case, whatever we could have offered him it was only going to push the price up so we stepped out of it.
"It's all right me saying he is a good player and I did try to get him, but if I start talking about him now Man City are going to come on the phone and start having a row with me. 'Why is your manager talking about our striker?' He belongs to Man City, I wouldn't see them selling him. I would be very surprised."
There was also praise for the centre-back Michael Dawson who has formed a strong partnership with Sebastien Bassong in the absence of the injured Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate. Redknapp said that Dawson, uncapped for England, was an outside bet for the England World Cup finals squad. He has King coming back to fitness but there are doubts over Vedran Corluka (sickness) and Alan Hutton (foot injury) Redknapp said: "[John] Terry and [Rio] Ferdinand are fantastic if they are fit. There is no reason why not. [Joleon] Lescott has an injury problem with his knee. Michael Dawson, if he continues the way he is playing, could put himself in the picture.
"He's just a fantastic character. Lovely guy, you'll never meet a better boy. He's wholehearted, a proper centre-half, great in the air. He'll go through a brick wall for you. He can pass it too, he has a great range if you look at his long passing. He's come back strong and it's hard to shift him out of the team now. The way Dawson is playing I could not leave him out."Reuse content