Spurs fans' abuse of Sol was vile and unacceptable, says Redknapp

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The Independent Football

The Portsmouth manager, Harry Redknapp, has criticised Tottenham Hotspur fans for their "filthy" verbal abuse of Sol Campbell and warns that it is a growing problem in the game.

Campbell was so upset by the treatment he received in last Saturday's 1-0 home defeat by Spurs whose supporters still cannot forgive him for joining rivals Arsenal six years ago that he believes the authorities must find a way of dealing with such behaviour.

Redknapp, who came in for barracking at Aston Villa the previous week following his recent arrest by police investigating corruption in football, said: "How can we stop it ? How can we legislate for grown men shouting things like that at Sol? I got some as well at Villa. What affected me most was that it was done in the presence of little children.

"People say they pay their money and are entitled to... but it was vile and completely unacceptable. But stamping it out will be difficult. It didn't really happen when I used to go to matches as a young lad with my dad, but now it is happening more and more.

"It looks like it is creeping well into the game even if through a minority but it is completely out of order. My first experience of it was a few years ago when I was watching Ronny Rosenthal play. They were shouting shocking things at him about being Jewish. I was there with my wife and it was an awful thing to hear.

"But some other things that are said these days are just as bad and I wouldn't even want to tell my wife what is being said now let alone little kids hearing it. What chance have they got for the future when their parents behave this way?"

Portsmouth play Liverpool at Anfield tomorrow and Redknapp added: "I don't expect anything like that there. They have always been a great crowd at Anfield and there is always a terrific atmosphere."

The left-back Noe Pamarot is out of tomorrow's game with a hamstring injury sustained against Spurs and Hermann Hreidarsson will be recalled. But Redknapp's big worries start next month when he loses four players Sulley Muntari, Kanu, John Utaka and Papa Bouba Diop to the African Nations Cup.

"The owner has spent big money here already and I haven't asked him if there's any more for buying new players," Redknapp said. "So it looks as though we are going to have to depend on a few loans to fill up the squad in January, if we can find them. If not, any injury will hit us really hard."