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May 9, 2014

Sherwood: Spurs players lack 'respect'

LONDON -- Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood has claimed he has felt like a supply teacher struggling to gain the respect of his pupils during his time in charge at White Hart Lane.

Tim Sherwood
Tim Sherwood has been upset by the attitude of some Tottenham players.

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Sherwood has been forced to deal with constant speculation about his future in the job since he succeeded Andre Villas-Boas as Spurs boss last December, even though he was handed an 18-month contract that runs until the summer of 2015.

As Sherwood addressed the media for what may have been his final prematch news briefing in his current role, he opened up about the difficulties of trying to operate in an atmosphere that has left him struggling to gain the confidence of his players as they suspect his position at the club is temporary.

"If you have a supply teacher who comes into your school, sometimes they're not treated with the respect that a headmaster is," Sherwood said at the club's Enfield training base.

"I think I've done alright. It's a difficult situation taking over when I did with someone else's players. It's a good squad, but we have had a lot of injuries and key players have been missing an awful lot.

"I think my win percentage stands on its own, it's up there, it's better than anyone's [former Spurs managers] in the Premier League, so what more could I have done really? I'm happy with what I've done.

"Obviously we want to beat the bigger teams and against the top four that would have been nice, but you've got to play every team, so it doesn't matter how many times you beat Man City or Liverpool, you've got to play the rest and you've got to put them away.

"I think our points accumulated over the period of time when I've been at the club probably takes us into the top four, so I'm not sure if I could have done too much more.

"People will always judge on what I've come in and done. You're absolutely right, it's imperative to have a preseason and bed your ideas in. And also I'm doing it with a lot of uncertainty around my future."

Sherwood went on to claim that some of his own players have been informed that he will not be in charge at Tottenham next season, with Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino and Ajax's Frank de Boer being heavily linked with the post.

Tottenham's Brazilian midfielder Sandro went public earlier this week in his belief that Sherwood would lose his job after the final Premier League game of the season against Aston Villa on Sunday, with the rumours a source of constant annoyance for the Spurs boss.

"If I need any information I'm better off asking the players, he is not the first player to have asked me," Sherwood said in response to questions about Sandro's comments. "He hasn't actually asked me, he has just given his opinion to someone.

"I'm not sure if the chairman has spoken to Sandro, but obviously someone has told him, the players see a lot of speculation don't they. It begins to be more than that, I have had a lot of players come to me and say their agents have told them that I'm not going to be here next year, it is a very difficult situation but I have got to get on with it."

Sherwood went on to conclude that he does not yet have a meeting in the diary to discuss his future with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, as he did his best to insist his eyes remain on Sunday's game against Villa.

"We are focusing on this last game against Villa we want a positive result and then we will sit down and have a chat," Sherwood added.

"I have to wait to see the chairman and see what the future holds. We have already discussed pre-season and I gave a list of players to the chairman and to [Tottenham Sporting Director] Franco Baldini of who I recommend we keep, who I recommend leave and who I recommend come in. They haven't given me an indication how they are moving forward with that."

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