Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp is set to enter the final year of his contract. According to certain reports, chairman Daniel Levy is not rushing to hand Redknapp a lengthy extension this summer.
The Telegraph reported on Tuesday that Redknapp offered a public verbal warning regarding his status with the club. The story quoted the Spurs boss as having stated: "It's up to Tottenham whether they want to extend that contract or not. If they don't extend it and I go into my last year, it is not an easy one when players know you have only got a year left. It is not a case of me looking for security. What it is about is players knowing you have only got year left on your contract and knowing that it doesn't work, basically. I think it's a situation of, 'well, he might not be here next year.'"
The story took quite the interesting turn on Wednesday, when the London Evening Standard reported that Levy is currently only willing to offer Redknapp a one-year rolling extension, one that would, if seen through to the end, keep the manager with Spurs for two more seasons. The same story claims that the sides were negotiating on a potential four-year extension back during the spring, when Spurs were a top-three side. Tottenham eventually lost hold of their double-digit lead in the league table over rivals Arsenal, however, and Spurs ultimately finished in fourth place and out of Champions League due to Chelsea defeating Bayern Munich.
Spurs supporters who are hoping that both Redknapp and Levy pursue other options are upset with the current Tottenham manager for a variety of reasons. Redknapp's in-game tactics have been routinely questioned by both analysts and fans over the past several years. Redknapp was also criticized this past winter for numerous loans that depleted the squad's depth with over three months remaining in the season. Missing out on third place, which was Tottenham's spot to lose all the way up until their 1-1 draw with Aston Villa on May 6, was the final unforgivable crime in the eyes of those individuals voicing "Harry out!" opinions this spring.
It would be unfair, however, to suggest that Spurs have been completely unsuccessful under Redknapp. Tottenham have finished fourth, fifth and fourth in the Premier League table in the past three seasons. Spurs also reached the Champions League quarter-final back in 2011. Depending on the team's ability to hold onto players such as Luka Modric and Gareth Bale, Spurs could again be favorites to land a Champions League spot next season.
One must also remember that, while Redknapp certainly hasn't enjoyed a great relationship with all of his players since joining Spurs, he is well-liked by many in the squad. The on-loan Emmanuel Adebayor, who is still hoping to make a permanent move to Spurs this summer, Kyle Walker and Rafael Van der Vaart have all publicly praised Redknapp since the end of the 2011-12 campaign. The previously linked Telegraph story quoted Van der Vaart as telling reporters: "(Redknapp) is doing a fantastic job, so I don't see any problems. I think he's going to sign a new contract - I hope so - and I think it's also good for every team when they have a manager who's there for many years. So I hope he stays." For what it's worth, the Dutch ace has been linked with making a move from White Hart Lane following the upcoming European Championship.
All things considered, I think Redknapp signing a one-year extension is fair for everybody. Such a deal sends a message to those like Bale and Van der Vaart that Redknapp does have at least somewhat of a future with Spurs; but only if he gets the job done with what should once again be a talented squad. Regardless of how the season ended, many Tottenham fans located around the world believe that Redknapp had the third best team in the country this past spring, and that Spurs must adopt a "Champions League or bust" mantra for the upcoming campaign. Spurs may have been a bit unlucky to not reach Champions League this time around due to Chelsea's magical run, but Tottenham supporters won't accept any excuses for a disappointing finish next May.