Spurs title talk is wide of the mark, says Tim Sherwood
SPURS coach Tim Sherwood believes the club face a tough task to emulate last season's success – and insists talk of the Premier League crown is wide of the mark. Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp recently stated that his young squad...
By Ian Cooper
SPURS coach Tim Sherwood believes the club face a tough task to emulate last season's success - and insists talk of the Premier League crown is wide of the mark.
Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp recently stated that his young squad "had to aim for the title" if they are to break the current stranglehold of Chelsea and Manchester United.
But Sherwood believes that securing another fourth-placed finish - let alone the title - promises to be a far harder challenge this year, citing opening-day opponents Manchester City as one of a number of teams with equally lofty ambitions.
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"I'm not sure I'd agree with Harry about a title challenge," said Sherwood, who made 118 appearances in Tottenham's midfield from 1999-2003.
"I think we overachieved massively last season. It was beyond expectation, everyone would say that. For us to emulate that would be a massive success. We know how hard it was last year, it would be even more difficult this year.
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"It will be far harder for everyone this year. Manchester City are obviously going to be stronger, and Liverpool won't be as bad as they were last year. We're obviously going to try to finish as high as we can."
Sherwood feels that qualification for the group stages of the Champions League represents the next realistic step forward for Redknapp's side, and he is urging Tottenham to focus their attention on the upcoming qualifiers, rather than being distracted by talk of the Premier League crown.
"It's a gradual building process and we took a massive step last year," he said. "If we can win this qualifier in the Champions League it's a massive bonus because it brings revenue into the club and hopefully allows us to add to the already great squad that we've got."
Sherwood knows just how hard it is to follow a season of success. Blackburn Rovers won the title under his captaincy in 1994-95, but finished seventh the following season and suffered relegation three years later. He believes Spurs need to add names to their squad if they are to continue their progress.
"We would have liked Joe Cole but unfortunately he chose to go to Liverpool and we just have to suffer that now and look elsewhere," he added.
"We've got a good group of players here already but it's always good to add to your squad and freshen it up, and I think that's what we'll be looking to do between now and the end of the summer."
Meanwhile, Sherwood admits that he is eyeing a future in management, and he believes he has the perfect tutor at Spurs in Redknapp.
"It's been good. I'm learning from a manager who, in my opinion, is the best manager to learn from," he said. "I enjoy learning from him, every day is a learning curve for me. Without a doubt I'd like to get into management. If I got an opportunity to manage I'd weigh up whether it's the best opportunity for me and then take it from there.