Tottenham Hotspur: Will Pessimistic Harry Redknapp Be Spurs' Downfall?
The beginning of the 2011-12 Premier League season is now just two weeks away, and all the top clubs are beginning to get their affairs in order to make yet another attempt at glory.
While most teams are stroking players' egos and telling their squads that they, and only they, can take home England's top honors in the coming campaign, Redknapp is taking a slightly different approach: publicly doubting his side's chances for all fans and players to hear.
Recently, long-time Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson told reporters that he expects the coming race to be one of the tightest in years, saying that he expects Liverpool to contend and calling the Reds, Chelsea and Manchester City "our immediate challengers."
Redknapp, of course, should have something to say about that. Instead, he revealed his transfer-season frustration and admitted of Ferguson's implication that Tottenham will not contend.
"It's looking that way."
"Fergie didn't mention us," he told Sky Sports this weekend. "He stuck Liverpool in there this year, and probably with what they have brought in, it's looking that way."
He also took what seemed to be a bleak, hopeless stance against even attempting to compete against big-spending clubs like Man City in the future.
"How do you compete with the Man City's of this world?" he lamented, adding, "It's gone beyond belief and made it really hard to compete for top players. If you want to be a top-four side, it's difficult because we can't pay those kind of wages."
Redknapp may have a pretty solid point, but that may not be entirely relevant to the controversy his words have created. Valid point or not, what exactly is the manager of a team that fancies themselves one of England's top sides doing saying this sort of thing to the media two weeks before match day?
With the first match of the season so close, this sort of talk is unsettling for any Spurs fan, to say the least. But the danger comes not only with the potential impact that this pessimistic mindset could have on his approach to the season from a coaching perspective but also whether or not his words create an unsettling impact among the players as well.
For so much of the summer, we've heard the opposite of this sort of talk from Redknapp, and we're all well aware of Luka Modric's own opinion of the club's capabilities.
The club has maintained that they will be contenders, even basing their decision to keep Modric on the squad, despite his efforts to leave, on the very idea that Tottenham can meet Modric's ambition.
It seems very out of character for Harry to be so open about his doubts, and the timing couldn't possibly be worse. With only days left leading up to new Premier League season, we can simply hope for the best, despite Redknapp's apparent expectations of the worst.
And for once, every Spurs fan will be hoping that Harry Redknapp is dead wrong in the way he sees things in North London.
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