Moyes and Martinez favourites for Spurs job as Redknapp sacked
Harry Redknapp's spectacular fall from grace is complete, while media speculate on his replacement
FOUR MONTHS ago, Harry Redknapp had the world at his feet. Tottenham were third in the Premier League and looking good for the Champions League, and Redknapp was being talked of as the man to lead England to the 2012 European Championships.
Today, the 65-year-old will officially leave Tottenham and join the massed ranks of Britain's unemployed. In a statement issued on the Spurs website, Redknapp said he "thoroughly enjoyed my time at Spurs and am proud of my achievements. I have had a fantastic four years with the club, at times the football has been breathtaking. I am sad to be leaving but wish to thank the players, staff and fans for their terrific support during my time there."
The Sun describes how "he was dumped yesterday in a showdown with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy". The paper alleges the move was instigated by Spurs owner Joe Lewis, who believes Redknapp is too old to take Tottenham any further.
The decision was a body blow to Harry, who had expected to spend the summer months negotiating a new and improved contract with Levy. What Redknapp failed to take into account, however, was his employers' displeasure at a slump in form that saw Spurs lose out to Arsenal in the battle for third spot and the all-important Champions League qualification.
According to the Daily Mirror, Levy and Redknapp spent Wednesday evening hammering out a severance package "from the 12 months remaining on his £3million-a-year contract"
While the Mirror predicts Redknapp could be lured to a coaching role in Qatar, there is feverish speculation as to who will replace him in the White Hart Lane hot seat.
The Guardian says that Levy "has made Everton's David Moyes his No. 1 target" and attempts will begin almost immediately to prise the Scot away from Goodison Park. Moyes has a year left on his existing contract and has yet to agree an extension with Everton chairman Bill Kenwright. According to the Guardian, Moyes is holidaying in the USA and there "has been no approach so far" from Spurs.
The Sun believes Wigan manager Roberto Martinez is the man wanted by Tottenham. At 38, Martinez is nearly 30 years the junior of Redknapp, and Joe Lewis is said to admire the brand of football his Wigan side played at the tail end of last season.
The Mirror mentions both Moyes and Martinez as possible successors to Redknapp but also throws into the ring the name of Jurgen Klinsmann, the former German international who enjoyed two spells with Tottenham in the 1990s.
Currently coach of the USA national team, the 47-year-old Klinsmann would be a glamorous and high-profile acquisition but a risky one nonetheless having had no experience of managing a Premier League club.
For its part, The Daily Telegraph doesn't rule out the possibility of Chelsea flop Andre Villas-Boas replacing Redknapp, although the paper also warns that "given Levy's reputation for tough negotiating, the prospect of a deal not being reached and Redknapp attempting to carry on was still an outside possibility".
Whatever the outcome, Tottenham have unravelled in astonishing fashion in the space of a few short months. It was only in February - on the eve of their match against Arsenal - that Redknapp was offering his support to the beleaguered Arsene Wenger.
Arsenal were ten points behind Spurs at the time and a growing number of Gooners were calling for their manager to be sacked. "Should Arsenal fans be careful what they wish for? Without a doubt," declared Redknapp when it was put to him that Wenger should go. "They can't replace Wenger. He has been amazing [in] the job he has done there."
Alas for Harry, Wenger might be irreplaceable - but he isn't.