Harry Redknapp has dismissed suggestions he risked alienating Queens Park Rangers’ chastened support by waving in response to home fans in the Park Lane end towards the end of his first return to Tottenham Hotspur.
QPR trailed by four goals when the chorus went up among the Spurs’ supporters behind Hugo Lloris’ goal for their former manager to acknowledge them. When Redknapp waved, the travelling fans in the corner of the ground broke out in to boos. “But I’m sitting there watching the game, and I hear them asking me to give them a wave,” he said in defence. “I don’t know which punters are sitting up where, do I? Whether that’s the home fans or the away fans. What’s the big deal anyway, if I give them a wave?”
The former Tottenham manager claimed his current side had played like “a team of strangers” in subsiding across the capital but will persist with the three-man defensive system currently being coached part-time by Glenn Hoddle at Loftus Road. “A disappointing day, very disappointing,” said Redknapp. “We started poorly and looked a little bit like a team of strangers. We let them play, didn’t get close to anybody, stood off them. Disappointing. I don’t know if the system is the problem. We played OK last week(in losing 1-0 to Hull) but it’s about energy really.
“We were slow on the ball, looked off the pace, didn’t have any energy. We weren’t sharp enough in certain areas and we’ll have to work harder than that, with and without the ball.
“I’d thrown one or two of them in, maybe... it was Mauricio Isla’s first game since the World Cup, and (Leroy) Fer’s first 90 minutes since May. Maybe one or two of them looked a bit slow, on the ball and without the ball.
“But you can’t just scrap the system when you’ve brought people in to play a specific way. Isla is a wing-back, really. That’s where he played for Juventus, after all. I thought Rio and (Steven) Caulker did okay today, but in front of them we were short of energy and legs. We didn’t get to grips in the middle of the park at all.”