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By ESPN Staff

Players had lost confidence in Jol - Levy

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy believes the club could have been relegated had they stuck with Martin Jol as manager.

Jol was sacked last month and replaced by former Sevilla manager Juande Ramos, but Spurs were widely criticised for their conduct during the change at the helm.

But Levy, speaking after taking some testing questions from Spurs shareholders at yesterday's Extraordinary General Meeting, claimed Spurs were on a downward spiral under Jol and that the Dutchman had 'lost the confidence' of his squad.

Levy said: 'We wanted Martin to succeed. The outside publicity was unfortunate but, in the end, it comes down to results.

'You can't have a situation where everybody is talking about finishing in the top four and then being in the bottom three.

'You cannot afford to take the risk that you may end up in a very, very bad situation. No club is too big to be relegated.

'We just weren't winning at all and you could look at the players, and there was a point when I think Martin had lost the confidence of the players. That happens in football.'

Levy also refused to confirm that star striker Dimitar Berbatov's long-term future is at White Hart Lane.

The Bulgaria international has been strongly linked with a move to Manchester United this term and Levy indicated he could struggle to hang onto the 26-year-old.

Levy added: 'No person is bigger than the club. I very much hope Dimitar will be here at the start of next season, but I hope that most of the first-team players will still be here.

'It's always difficult talking about individual players coming up to a transfer window, but I don't expect any of our players to leave in January.

'I very much hope they will be here in the summer. But summer is a long way off, and a lot can happen between now and then.'