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Nov 21, 2010

Redknapp and Wenger admit Spurs can win title

Harry Redknapp and Arsene Wenger both admitted Tottenham could win the Premier League after the White Hart Lane club came from two down to beat Arsenal 3-2 on Saturday.

• Palmer: Historic Spurs win

Arsenal appeared to be cruising when Samir Nasri and Marouane Chamakh handed them a 2-0 advantage at half-time, but then the Gunners capitulated as Tottenham came roaring back. Gareth Bale, Rafael van der Vaart and Younes Kaboul all found the net, sending Spurs within four points of Arsenal.

Redknapp bullishly claimed his side could now go on to catch Chelsea, and Wenger did not disagree, although he preferred to focus on the mistakes of his players.

"There are ten teams who can win the championship mathematically. Tottenham is one of them," the Arsenal manager said. "I am convinced we are in it, but there are chances in the championship you want to take.

"If you look at the stats and the numbers, it is very difficult to understand how we lost this game - a drop in concentration, some basic errors, some back luck as well. You are a bit speechless to re-analyse the game. It is a mystery how you can lose a game like that.

"If you look at the clear-cut chances that Tottenham had today, it is difficult to understand how we can concede three goals, but we lost it and we can only look at ourselves. We could not maintain the focus nor the urgency for 90 minutes because some players dropped. I believe that overall we delivered a performance expected in a game like that quality-wise. However, it was a mixture of fatigue in the second half, and also a lack of cautiousness."

Given Spurs' lacklustre first half, Redknapp could have focused on the negatives in his post-match summary, but he instead chose to challenge his players to win Tottenham's first Premier League title.

"It's wide open this league this year, it's wide open," Redknapp said. "Chelsea are not as good as they were; Man United are not as good as they were three or four years ago. They're still excellent teams but they're not the force they were. They were almost invincible, the pair of them.

"I think Tottenham are now getting closer and the championship is wide open. I said that to the players yesterday morning. 'Why can't you win the championship? Who says you can't?' It's wide open for somebody who can put a run together. It's there for someone to have real go at it this year. Why should we all be fearful and keep saying, 'We can't win it'?'

"I wouldn't be saying it if we had a bad group of players. I'm a realist; I'm not dreaming. It's difficult to do but it's not impossible. This is the best chance anyone's going to get this year. There's very little to choose between the top five or six teams at the moment."

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