Pompey cash woes nothing to do with me -- Redknapp
HARRY Redknapp last night absolved himself from any blame for Portsmouth's plunge into administration as he reflected on his former club's fate.
The Tottenham manager was swift to counter several accusations, chiefly, the belief among some Portsmouth fans that his spending was the trigger for the club's financial mess.
Redknapp calculated that he turned a profit on transfers for Portsmouth and is adamant that he was unaware of players' wages, which have proved unsustainable on the club's turnover. He claims the writing was on the wall when Sacha Gaydamak, then the owner, pulled the plug on funding.
He signed 31 players permanently at a net outlay of £36.4m during nearly three years at Fratton Park. Portsmouth have brought in a net £68.1m in player sales in the past three transfer windows since he left.
"People don't know what they are talking about," Redknapp said. "The stadium holds 19,000 people, there is no hospitality. That's the trouble. Who knows where the money has gone, who knows what they have done? (My record was) amazing, unbelievable.
"Sylvain Distin was free, sold for £5m, so with his wages cost nothing. (Lassana) Diarra cost £5m, paid £2.5m in wages, and they sold him for £22m. Glen Johnson cost £4m, was on £30,000 a week, they sold him for £18m. They even made £9m profit on (Jermain) Defoe."
He questioned why Portsmouth bought eight players in the summer if they had financial problems: "They didn't say, 'We haven't got money so we're not going to spend' -- they spent about £11m."
He also discounted Tottenham's pedigree in the FA Cup. "They say that it's a cup club but it's nearly 20 years since they won," he said. "Why are we expected to win it now? We are fighting on two fronts and I would take either one and say what a fantastic season." (© The Times, London)
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