Can Tottenham Halt Their Fall from the Top 4?

Antony HerbertAnalyst IIIApril 26, 2011

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 05:  Harry Redknapp manager of Tottenham Hotspur reacts during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final first leg match between Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on April 5, 2011 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images

After a frustrating draw against West Brom, Tottenham Hotspur seem to be unable to avert their decline from Premiership's top four. Their inability to defeat the midlands side has been heralded as the end to a second consecutive Champions League qualification.

And now with the emergence of a former contender, amongst the consistency and financial impetus of other teams, have Spurs found themselves further away from a rebound than ever before?

In fairness to Spurs, they were playing a West Brom side with revitalised form. Roy Hodgson had lead them to a mid table position with a run of good performance, including a revenge defeat on the team who sacked him earlier in the season.

Yet for Spurs their recent form has not been sufficient enough to achieve their goals. Their inability to string together a consistent run of results now leaves them in danger of not only losing their Champions League place but also for their entire inclusion in Europe.

This is the possibly impending fate that could befall upon a team who produced a highly credible debut season in Europe's elite club competition.

Manchester City's late win against Blackburn was enough to open up a four-point gap over Spurs with five games remaining.

This is not an impossible tally for Spurs to overcome, however upcoming away fixtures against Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City means the going is going to be incredibly tough.

Instead of focusing on the loss of a top four finish Harry Redknapp's men will now have to put up an unexpected fight against Liverpool for fifth. With Stoke qualifying for the Europa League by reaching the FA Cup final, only fifth will offer the final spot to Europe for English teams.

A betting man currently would splash all his money toward Liverpool.

The Kop outfit are the in form team of the second half of the season. Kenny Dalglish has brought a revolution to Anfield and there is no doubt that next season if this form should continue then Liverpool will be Manchester United's main title competition.

For Spurs, their three-point lead over Liverpool, accompanying a game in hand is not enough to quell the worrying run in for the team and their fans.

One of their remaining fixtures is a tie at Anfield which could effectively wipe out the three point advantage if they failed to avoid a predicted defeat. If Spurs further fail to gain points against Chelsea or Manchester City then Liverpool can comfortably snatch fifth and that final Europa League spot.

Spurs can be consolidated in the ideal that despite Liverpool's impressive resurgence, the Merseysiders have had occasional slip ups against easier opponents.

The underlying fact however is that if Liverpool win each of their remaining four fixtures in the same vein as their demolition of Birmingham then they will force Spurs into raising their game.

The harsh consequence and reality is that Spurs now look like drifting further away from future top-four finishes and a reclamation of their peak.

Indeed it is only Manchester City who seem within touching distance. City's financial backing gives them the edge over Spurs and may halt the challenge from Harry Redknapp's starting eleven.

Arsenal and Chelsea also have the foundations to keep up with Manchester United.

Chelsea themselves have shown a £40 million interest in Tottenham's best player Gareth Bale. Such a transfer could just be the nail in the coffin for the London side if the squad is not strengthened.

Harry Redknapp is a well-respected and capable manager, and for his achievements of bringing Spurs back from the brink he must be commended. It is in him and his management of the situation and his able players that the supporters belief will lie.