Quite recently, over one or seven pints, a very salient point was made by my father who is also a Tottenham fan and it’s one that a large proportion of Spurs supporters have been doing a good job of ignoring (I include myself in that group for the record).
I’ve had to paraphrase as the old man is a bit more definitive/sweary in his opinions, but it goes a little something like this – provided Spurs achieve a respectable league finish, say 7th or above, Harry Redknapp looks very likely to be the next England manager after Euro 2012.
Harry has made no secret that he would jump at the chance to take charge of the national team, a right and admirable conviction as an Englishman, but I feel this represents two major problems for the football club that Daniel Levy must address.
Firstly, How can a manager who in all likelihood will be taking charge of England when Fabio Capello’s contract runs out at the end of Polkraine 2012 be 100% committed to season 2011/12? A prospective England manager needs to be on good terms with all the managers in the Premier League in order to avoid club/country rows. Spurs and Harry Redknapp going out all guns blazing at the Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup this coming season would be bound to ruffle more than a few feathers along the way, which wouldn’t exactly be conducive to a good working relationship were he to take the England job.
Admittedly Harry is very adept at getting on with most managers, but surely a quiet season would be a safer bet. Why go all out for Spurs this season expending a lot of energy and enduring heart attack inducing levels of stress when he could coast along and still get his dream job?
Secondly, it is impossible for him to be fully committed to the future development of Tottenham Hotspur. As the tournament gets closer throughout next season so the debate about who should be Cappello’s successor will rage ever louder. As the din of that debate grows, Redknapp’s name will surely be heard louder than most as long as Spurs aren’t bottom of the league at Christmas. Given that we know he will take the job if it is offered to him, all thoughts of future planning for the club will quickly disappear from his priorities.
I am not for one moment suggesting we replace Redknapp. However Daniel Levy must, if he already hasn’t, discuss these issues with Redknapp and obtain some assurances on how he would seek to balance his ambitions with the ambitions of Tottenham Hotspur. Otherwise the club is in danger one of its most important seasons in recent years becoming disrupted and hindered by the distracting ambitions of the manager.