Redknapp urges West Ham to stand by Grant

Click to follow
The Independent Football

Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has urged West Ham to stand by under-fire manager Avram Grant.

The Hammers are rooted to the foot of the Barclays Premier League after a dismal start which has seen them pick up only one point from five matches.

Despite last week's 1-1 draw at Stoke, and public votes of confidence from club chairmen David Gold and David Sullivan, pressure is still on the Israeli, who signed a four-year contract to succeed Gianfranco Zola this summer.

Failure to take anything from a hotly-contested derby against the Hammers' bitter local rivals Spurs tomorrow will only add further questions about Grant's future at the club.

Spurs boss Redknapp, who worked alongside Grant during his time at Portsmouth, is convinced that the 55-year-old is the man to drag his former club out of the relegation zone.

"I don't see why you'd give someone a job and then consider letting them go after three or four weeks," said Redknapp.

"He has only just got there. That doesn't make sense. I'm sure he will do a good job there.

"I think he's there for the long-term. He'll do a good job there if he's given time."

Grant was brought in to the club as they attempted to move on from Zola's failed two-year term, which ended with the east London outfit narrowly avoiding relegation.

Redknapp thinks a squad with the likes of Scott Parker, Matthew Upson and Robert Green is good enough to avoid a potentially-crippling relegation to the npower Championship.

"It's going to be tight down there," said Redknapp.

"All the teams that have come up have played well.

"Wolves, who came up the previous year, played well when we played them last week, they are a very good side. They're not relegation candidates so it's certainly going to be very tight this year but I certainly don't see West Ham being one of those teams that's going to struggle to stay up."

Redknapp made 175 appearances for West Ham as a player before embarking upon a successful seven-year spell as manager in which he brought through the likes of Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard and Joe Cole.

He admits the club retains a special place in his heart.

"I still look for their results every week," said Redknapp.

"I grew up there. I was there at 15 and have great memories as a kid growing up with all those great players, Frank Lampard, Trevor Brooking.

"They were great days and it was a great part of my life."

He continued: "I loved managing a good team and all those kids that came through as well.

"Six of them went on to play for England out of that youth team so they were great times, working with (Paolo) Di Canio and all those people, they were great times."

Spurs' pride was dented in midweek as they lost the north London bragging rights with a 4-1 Carling Cup defeat against rivals Arsenal.

Redknapp denies that will have any bearing on the team's confidence given that the side he put out was largely his second string.

"You want to win every game and I wanted to win the other night," said Redknapp.

"Arsenal put out a fairly strong side and I played a team we had to play.

"I couldn't play Ledley (King) because of his injury. I had to make some changes because I have two central defenders fit now. Michael Dawson is out long term I only have (William) Gallas and (Sebastien) Bassong, so there's no-one else available.

"I didn't want to chance Gallas on Tuesday, it would've been difficult gambling with him."

Redknapp will welcome back Rafael van der Vaart, Luka Modric and Vedran Corluka for tomorrow's match although Heurelho Gomes has not recovered from a groin strain in time, meaning that Stipe Pletikosa or Carlo Cudicini will start in goal.