Harry Redknapp Has Put Pressure On His Tottenham Hotspur Team
Tottenham Hotspur have suddenly found themselves under the most pressure in the Premier League title race.
The talk of England's top-flight is all about Spurs right now, given that they are level on points with Manchester United and just three points off mega-spenders Manchester City.
Such comments about the White Hart Lane club aren't helped by boss Harry Redknapp who, despite his best efforts to play down his team's title contenders tag, has thrust his team firmly into the spotlight by insisting they aren't overachieving.
He wrote in his weekly column for The Sun:
We deserve to be in the position we are. It's not an over-achievement but the result of a long, hard slog building something I hope will be special at a special club.
...We got Scott [Parker], [Emmanuel Adebayor] and Brad [Friedel] but we didn't get Joe Cole. You could have got him from Liverpool for nothing last summer but it never happened for us.
But I did get three key players who added to those already here and the season's taken off. It's given us the extra ingredients to compete for Champions League and, who knows, even the title.
Redknapp could've been making those comments in an attempt to persuade a marquee signing to join the Lilywhites, but either way they've now put a lot of pressure on the Spurs players.
Everyone will be interested to see how they get on this weekend against Wolverhampton Wanderers, while there'll be fans, players, managers, journalists, etc. all waiting for the self-proclaimed challengers to the throne to fall.
Are Tottenham Hotspur Genuine Premier League Title Contenders?
Type in "Tottenham Hotspur title contenders" on Google and on the first page you'll see David Platt, Mick McCarthy, David Moyes and Phil Neville, as well as the team's own midfield star Rafael Van der Vaart, all building up Spurs' title credentials.
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has been bigging up Redknapp's men since December, insisting they are big threat in the title race.
Redknapp's comments are a great way to boost self-efficacy in the team, one of the most vital requirements to be successful in sport.
However, with his words come those rather more hollow ones from fellow managers, who are trying to lump the expectations onto Spurs.
With expectation comes pressure, and of course when things aren't going right, with pressure comes frustration. And as is most often the case, with all of that ultimately comes disappointment.
Tottenham are flying high now, but with all the superlatives attached to them, the criticisms and dismissive statements on the players, the club and the manager will immediately follow should they hit a poor run of form.
With hubris inevitably comes hamartia, and having never been in a Premier League title race before, Tottenham Hotspur should pay attention to that more than anyone.