Redknapp quick to return focus to the league

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The Independent Football

Harry Redknapp toasted Tottenham's Champions League qualification with a cup of tea and a bacon sandwich - before immediately turning his attention to beating Wigan on Saturday.

Peter Crouch fired a hat-trick and Jermain Defoe - with more than a hint of handball - was also on target as Spurs thrashed Young Boys 4-0 in their play-off second leg at White Hart Lane to secure a place in this afternoon's draw for the lucrative group stages for the first time since playing in the 1961/62 European Cup.

Spurs fans may have left White Hart Lane dreaming of trips to Madrid, Barcelona and Milan, but the ever pragmatic Redknapp, kept his feet firmly on the floor.

"This is a club with European tradition, under the great Bill Nicholson, I would not be in the same class as him, and never will be, but it is great for the club to be in this position now," Redknapp said.

"I will probably just go home, have a bacon sandwich and a cup of tea, that is all I want.

"We have got Wigan here on Saturday and it is important we continue to pick up points in the Premier League."

Redknapp dedicated the achievement to the White Hart Lane faithful, who have seen bitter rivals Arsenal gain so much success over the past decade.

"As a kid I used to come training here and watched the games with Benfica in those great days, and at that time it was amazing to see European football and the way this place was jumping," Redknapp said.

"To bring it back was great for the fans - and that is what it is all about really, the supporters, we have given them something to look forward to in the Champions League."

The achievement capped a remarkable transformation for Spurs under Redknapp, who took over a squad struggling at the wrong end of the table when he moved from Portsmouth two years ago.

"I always felt it was possible. Tottenham were a club which had underachieved for a long time," Redknapp said.

"The potential was here if we could get the players, and it is not as if I have bought a new team, it was just about instilling a bit of confidence, getting them playing and maybe changing their attitude in some cases. They responded and we have ended up where we have."

Redknapp insisted he did not expect to do much more business in the transfer market ahead of the end of the window, but confirmed Croatian keeper Stipe Pletikosa was set to sign on a season-long loan following a successful trial.

Goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes was replaced at half-time by Carlo Cudicini, who made his first appearance since a serious motorcycle accident last November.

The Brazilian could be out for around a month, while Redknapp wants Defoe's groin problem solved sooner rather than later, with an operation planned for next week ahead of the international break.

"We are in the hands of the medical people, but he said he did not feel anything during the game," Redknapp said.

"I would rather he get it done, I don't want it dragging on all year for him."

Young Boys coach Vladimir Petkovic admitted his side were outmuscled by a rampant Spurs team.

"We paid for the fact that Spurs had a physical advantage over us, won every header, and their second goal just broke us," he said.

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