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By ESPN Staff

Harry bemoans lack of balance in Spurs squad

Harry Redknapp declared on Tuesday night that his Tottenham Hotspur squad was still ''badly balanced'' and that he is keen to do more business during the January transfer window after landing £15million striker Jermain Defoe.

The England forward was paraded in front of the White Hart Lane faithful before Tuesday night's Carling Cup semi-final first leg 4-1 win over Coca-Cola Championship side Burnley.

Although the deal to bring Defoe back to Spurs, who he left a year ago to join Redknapp at Fratton Park, has yet to be formally completed, it is expected to be the first of several deals for the north London club this month.

Redknapp took over from Juande Ramos in October and maintains he has his work cut out to shape a side capable of competing in the Premier League.

''We have not really got a squad. If you look at my team tonight, that was the best I have available,'' said the former Pompey boss.

''We have not got any strength in depth or cover - if Gareth Bale gets a knock, there is no-one else to play left-back. It is a badly-balanced, put-together squad, in all honesty, from day one.''

Ghana midfielder Stephen Appiah is on trial and could be one of several more fresh faces arriving during the transfer window.

Redknapp added: ''I would like to get another three or four decent players in. I think we need to.

''We need a certain type here - we have got an awful lot of good little players, but we need more strength and a bit more power in the team.''

Defoe, 26, has already played under Redknapp at West Ham and Pompey and maintained the coach was a major influence in the transfer.

Redknapp, though, insisted he had not 'raided' his old club for one of their prized assets.

''The little fella will score goals and give us all a lift,'' he said. ''But he was for sale, I did not go and raid Portsmouth at all. They wanted to sell Jermain Defoe.

''I said I would not go back there and upset anyone, or try to take any players unless the club wanted to sell them - and Portsmouth wanted to sell Jermain, to us, to Manchester City or whoever was going to pay some decent money.

''It was a good deal for everyone. What a fantastic deal for Portsmouth in a year, the money they have earned out of him.

''They can have no complaints, they have sold Lassana Diarra for £20million, who I paid £5million for, and there are a few more they will make fortunes on, I am sure, because they have got some terrific players there.

''They even got £5million for me, and I am only worth about five bob, which is how silly it all was really.''

Redknapp admitted he had not expected the eventual outcome of the match after watching his ''naive'' team outplayed by the Championship side in the first half, when they snatched a shock lead through Martin Paterson.

However, Jamie O'Hara came off the bench to set up the equaliser for Michael Dawson from a corner at the start of the second half, before smashing Spurs in front on 52 minutes.

Roman Pavlyuchenko drilled in a third with Michael Duff heading an own goal as holders Spurs took a major step towards a Wembley return in March.

Redknapp said: ''They had us on the rack, and I could certainly not see that end result coming.

''At the break, I told them: 'I am going to find out an awful lot in the second half about a lot of you', because we will show what we are made of now as we were under a lot of pressure.

''It was the first time I have really gone into them, but it did the trick. We responded fantastically. Jamie came on and was fantastic.''

Redknapp added: ''We are naive. I look at us at times and some of the young players do things when a bit of knowhow is missing.''

The Spurs boss maintains his men should now go on to secure safe passage to Wembley, where they will face either Manchester United or Derby.

He said: ''It is not over, but if you cannot defend a three-goal lead, with good Premier League players, then there is something wrong and we are in trouble.''

Burnley boss Owen Coyle admitted his team have a tough job on their hands to overturn the deficit in the second leg at Turf Moor, but praised their first-half efforts.

He said: ''We did everything which was asked of us and had looked a good side. But I do not think anyone would have for seen what was going to happen at the start of the second half.

''But when you are playing teams at the top level, if you switch off for a moment, you will get punished.''

Coyle added: ''I felt if we had kept it nice and compact, we could have taken it back to Turf Moor and had a reasonable chance. As it is, we have given ourselves more than a mountain to climb, and there is a long way back.''


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