Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp laments international break
Monday 27 February 2012
Harry Redknapp admits Tottenham need to bounce back from yesterday's north London derby defeat immediately - but concedes the international break could scupper that.
Arsenal completed an incredible comeback at the Emirates Stadium as they recovered from a two-goal deficit to win 5-2 in the Barclays Premier League clash.
Redknapp highlighted the importance of an immediate response next weekend when they welcome Manchester United to White Hart Lane, but admits this week's international fixtures will make it a more difficult challenge.
"We've got to come back like we did earlier in the season," the Spurs boss said. "We need to bounce back and recover. The problem is that everyone is going to various parts of the world to play international games.
"They don't come back until Friday so there's hardly anyone in all week. It's crazy build-up to massive games at this stage of the season and with us playing Manchester United next week.
"It's difficult, the schedule. We've got people going to Mexico. One lad is off to New Zealand on a 34-hour flight."
Spurs had looked on course for victory after goals from Louis Saha and Emmanuel Adebayor, although they were pegged back before half-time by Bacary Sagna's header and a Robin van Persie wonder-strike.
Arsenal continued in the same vein after the break and took the lead through Tomas Rosicky six minutes into the second half, before a Theo Walcott brace wrapped up the resounding victory.
Redknapp seemed taken aback after the game and admitted it was "one of those days".
"I didn't feel comfortable to be honest at 2-0 up," he said. "They were creating chances at 2-0.
"To be fair, when they got back to 2-2, they had an opportunity to go 3-2 before half-time so I wasn't exactly sitting there feeling comfortable. We were hitting them on the counter-attack, but we were camping deep in our half and they were making opportunities.
"At 2-0 I didn't feel comfortable and at 2-2 I felt even less comfortable and the momentum was with them at half-time. They came off to a standing ovation and you knew it was going to be a very tough second half.
"Van Persie with the second goal was amazing. He had a foot to aim in and stuck it in the top corner.
"They had a bit of quality about them today. They were busy in the middle of the park. It was one of those days for us. We weren't the same."
Tottenham's afternoon was made worse three minutes from time when influential midfielder Scott Parker was sent off for a second bookable offence.
The England international will now miss the clash with Sir Alex Ferguson's side through suspension and Redknapp hinted Ledley King could also miss out.
"Ledley was struggling a bit with his hamstring and knees," he said. "I took a chance today with him. He hasn't trained as normal.
"When he plays we normally win, but he found it a little bit harder today."
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