Redknapp: Spurs are not 'long-ball' team
Wednesday 10 February 2010
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp has hit back at claims his side rely on Peter Crouch's height and has branded accusations of long-ball football as "rubbish" ahead of their match with Wolverhampton at Molineux tonight.
Stoke players commented on Spurs going route one when they won at White Hart Lane earlier in the season and at the weekend Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel responded to terrace chants of his team being boring by highlighting the use of long balls to Crouch.
The Spurs manager responding to suggestions his side favour long balls, said: "That's rubbish. Absolute nonsense. We pass the ball to death and hit Crouchy in the right areas. They got labelled a long-ball team by Arsenal, maybe a couple of their players wanted to pass the buck to us but I wouldn't know what a long-ball team was.
"If you can hit a 50-yard pass, it's better than a 10-yard pass or a backwards one. It's about creating strikes on goals, if it's 50 yards then it's a great ball. It's about quality."
Crouch is Redknapp's preferred partner for Jermain Defoe and has played in 10 of Spurs' last 12 games, with a lack of opportunities for Robbie Keane leading to the Republic of Ireland captain moving on loan to Celtic.
"Every time we hit Crouchy against Villa he knocked the ball down and we had chances to score," Redknapp said. "If you are going to have Peter Crouch in your team you have to use him, you can't expect him to run up channels or to come short. That's not his game.
"He is an option when teams fill up the midfield and you can't pass through them. We have that great option to miss out the midfield, hit him and pick things up around the box.
"That is what makes us a much better team – we have options and don't have to keep passing.
"We are playing fantastic football but also have an option with Crouchy as well, which is good."
Spurs dropped out of the Champions League places when they drew with Villa on Saturday but Redknapp feels his team are playing well enough to sustain a challenge for a top-four place, even if he considers Liverpool favourites.
Redknapp said: "We're still right there. Liverpool are probably favourites. Man City, ourselves and Villa are pushing. It's going to be tight."
Meanwhile Wolves manager Mick McCarthy insists his side can survive in the Premier League. Wolves find themselves in the relegation zone after being beaten 2-1 by Birmingham City on Sunday. They have not won a Premier League game since beating Burnley on 20 December and have picked up just two points from their last three games.
But when asked if his side had the qualities to win their survival battle, McCarthy said: "I do believe that we have got it and what you see is what you get from me. I am not any good at acting. It is irrelevant what anyone else does and we were never going to stay up on 21 points.
"We are going to have to get near to 40 points. I don't think you will need 40 to stay up but we certainly need another 16, 17, or 18 points. But we are capable of doing it and that is what gives me the confidence."
A cautionary tale for ambitious would-be authors
X Factor judge will appear in court later this month
Latest in Sport
Roy Keane omits Paul Scholes, Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs from 'greatest' Manchester United team
Ian Herbert: England need to learn from Aussies and master art of avoiding ‘the creep’ so they can keep winning when they are winning
Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira relive their rivalry - after a shared ice cream in Warsaw
Ashes 2013-14 match report: Alastair Cook future in jeopardy after another woeful display sees England lose to Australia by 218 runs to go down 2-0
Manchester United player ratings: The best (and worst) performers for David Moyes during the season so far
- 1 Gurdwaras-turned-food banks: Sikh temples are catering for rise in Britain’s hungry
- 2 Exercise most effective lifestyle choice for preventing dementia, researchers say
- 3 Teenage girl convicted of robbery after taking pre-crime selfie wielding knife
- 4 Newly vegan Beyoncé wears fox fur to dine in meat free restaurant
- 5 'I'm experiencing austerity as well', says Princess Michael of Kent