Redknapp ready to give youth a chance
TOTTENHAM youngster John Bostock is expected to be on the bench against Dinamo Zagreb as Harry Redknapp looks to prioritise the Barclays Premier League over European football.
Redknapp has inspired seven points from his first three games in charge but Spurs are still bottom of the table, meaning Sunday's clash at Manchester City takes on greater significance than tonight's Uefa Cup fixture.
The hangover from Juande Ramos' reign will continue at White Hart Lane against Dinamo as the players he froze out – Paul Stalteri, Hossam Ghaly, Kevin-Prince Boateng, Adel Taarabt and Ricardo Rocha – were not registered to play in Europe.
Redknapp has since brought them back into the squad, but their unavailability tonight means 16-year-old Bostock – controversially signed from Crystal Palace in the summer in a deal that could cost more than 2million – will be among Spurs' young substitutes.
"He's on the bench and I'd love to get him on the pitch," Redknapp said. "He's only 16, a kid with terrific talent and a lovely left foot."
Redknapp will rest skipper Ledley King while Jermaine Jenas is struggling with a toe injury, Jamie O'Hara is suspended and Roman Pavlyuchenko and Vedran Corluka are cup-tied.
Manchester City manager Mark Hughes, meanwhile, believes Steve McClaren deserves credit for re-launching his career abroad. The former England manager takes his FC Twente side to Eastlands and Hughes, who has injury concerns over captain Richard Dunne, said: "There may be some friendly banter from our fans but Steve has moved on and the England team has moved on.
"I think there was always going to be a time when he wanted to ply his trade in a different country. That's what he's doing now and he should be applauded for that."
Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill is set to field some of his fringe players for his side's meeting with Slavia Prague in the Czech capital following Monday night's 2-0 defeat at Newcastle. Stiliyan Petrov and James Milner miss out through injury while Marlon Harewood has not travelled after the birth of his child on Tuesday night.
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