White Hart Lane boss points out area of weakness.
Harry Redknapp has described his Tottenham midfield as “short” and admitted the lack of options in that area “scares” him.
Spurs have made an impressive start to the season, winning their opening four Premier League matches before last Saturday’s 3-1 defeat by Manchester United, a game in which they had led.
But, ahead of Sunday’s match with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, Redknapp is concerned that further injury or suspension in the central area could damage his ambition to break into the top four this season.
“We are short in central midfield,” he said. “We have three central midfield players. [Jermaine] Jenas, [Tom] Huddlestone and [Wilson] Palacios. That is not enough. We have left ourselves short.
“Jamie O’Hara went on loan [to Portsmouth], and we sold Didier Zokora and [Kevin-Prince] Boateng,” Redknapp added before revealing O’Hara is likely to return. “Jamie is almost certainly coming back in January. I like Jamie as a person and player and we were not really mad keen to loan him but they [Portsmouth] were buying Boateng and they wanted to loan O’Hara. So it made it happen a bit.”
Redknapp admitted regret at not signing another central midfield player before the close of the summer transfer window. “I would like to have got Patrick Vieira and was genuinely keen on him,” he said of the Internazionale and former Arsenal midfielder.
“It is the only area that scares me a bit. Luka Modric [currently out injured] can play there as well but, if we get injuries, we only have three and that’s not enough.” (Guardian)
So is Harry right to be worried about the lack of central midfield cover and could it cost the north London side a good shot at a top four finish? Well clearly Redknapp has a point and he did make moves during the summer transfer window resolve the situation by moving for Vieira and Brazilian Sandro, both unsuccessful and clearly Tottenham would be keen to make moves in January with a renewed push for the former Arsenal captain as reported by many sources.
Clearly the squad as a whole has improved since the former Pompey boss took charge and with any luck injuries and loss of form will not affect the three central midfielders he is referred to but Jermaine Jenas in particular has looked distinctly average and the combination of Huddlestone and Palacios has been fantastic thus far.
So if there is a weakness in the White Hart Lane’s challenge it could be the lack of options as Harry as pointed out but clearly as a last resort he could recall Jamie from Fratton Park.