Harry Redknapp has said he would rather have stayed at home than been at the centre of transfer deadline day action with QPR, and described some of the goings on as “farcical”.
With Rangers rock bottom in the Premier League, former Spurs boss Redknapp spent January trying to strengthen his squad to fight relegation and was linked to a number of last-minute deals on deadline day. But he has claimed his reputation as a manager who revels in the transfer market is unfair.
Redknapp said: “I wouldn’t want to be involved in transfers on deadline day. I didn’t bother at Tottenham four years ago, I wasn’t really bothered. We didn’t have to sign anybody, we had such a good squad.
“We didn’t need to strengthen it. If we did, the chairman was very involved in doing any deals but we were in this situation where we were sitting in the [table].”
Despite perceptions, this is in fact only the third time out of five since taking over at Tottenham in 2008 that Redknapp has been busy on the last day of the January window. Last year, he brought Louis Saha to White Hart Lane on a free transfer and, in 2009, Robbie Keane back from Liverpool for £12 million.
He said: “It shouldn’t come to the last day. There was only one deal I was trying to do. The two boys from Tottenham were done. The deal was done the day before.
“I wish it had been done three weeks ago and I could have been sitting with my family. I’ve not been involved in that for the last few years.”
Redknapp did, however, explain that he would have signed Peter Crouch from Stoke City if terms could have been agreed, a player he has worked with at Southampton, Portsmouth and Tottenham previously.
“Tony [Pulis] didn’t want to sell him,” Redknapp said. “That was the end of that. He didn’t want to let him go. He’d have been a good player for us.”
Redknapp feels QPR have a real chance of Premier League survival after their January spending spree and an impressive run of form since the turn of the year. They have lost just one in seven in all competitions in 2013, including impressive results against Manchester City, Tottenham and a win over west London rivals Chelsea.
He said: “We can try. We’re averaging over a point a game, which is good. We need to win one or two more. We’ve had some very tough games. If somebody had said that Chelsea, Tottenham, West Ham and City [were coming up]... we’re in good form.
“We’ve given ourselves a chance. We’ve gone from 13 games to being on a decent run and getting ourselves a bit towards the pack. One or two wins can change that. It’s going to be hard. I still think we can do it. Players have worked their socks off and had decent games.”