The allure of Dubai’s famed lifestyle and challenge of getting football “up and running” there would tempt iconic ex-Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp to end his latest reluctant retirement.
Redknapp declared last month, “I doubt very much whether it will happen again now” when quizzed on his future in the dugout following a dismissal by the Championship’s Birmingham City.
A disappointing end to a colourful 34-year coaching career now appears likely after previously claiming the FA Cup with underdogs Portsmouth nine years ago, guiding Spurs to the 2010/11’s UEFA Champions League’s quarter-finals and stunning holders Manchester United in the 1982/83 FA Cup when in charge of then fourth-division Bournemouth.
Redknapp was close to sealing a job in the UAE with – the now defunct – Al Ahli in 2010. Talk of interest in the vacant Scotland post emerged in the last week, but it is the chance of enjoying a swansong in the Arabian Gulf League that seems enticing to the 70-year-old.
“I’d love to come and work in Dubai, as well,” Sport360° were told by Redknapp, who is taking part in Thursday’s star-studded ‘Swing Against Cancer’ Golf Series finale at Jumeirah Golf Estates which is organised by Sixteen10 and Worldwide Golf.
“I love Dubai, me and my wife absolutely love Dubai. I nearly came a few years ago, but that is somewhere I wouldn’t mind coming to work.
“It would be no hardship to come and live in Dubai. I am a big horse racing fan, big fan of Godolphin.
“I would love to go there and work, getting it up and running. I could enjoy working with the players there.
“It would be a fantastic place to come and work and improve the football there.”
Redknapp was an interested observer as Spurs blew Liverpool away with an electric 4-1 triumph on Sunday. This result has put them five points behind rampant Premier League leaders Manchester City and level on points with second-placed Manchester United, the team they travel to on Saturday.
The 2009/10 Premier League Manager of the Year believes a “defining week” lies ahead for United after their limp 2-1 defeat at promoted Huddersfield Town.
He said: “They [Spurs] are a strong team and probably the biggest challengers to Manchester City this season for the title.
“Manchester United at home need to win that game [against Spurs] if they are going to keep a challenge up this year.
“It could be defining week for them. If Man City get another win, then the gap starts to widen.”
2003 Rugby World Cup champion Mike Tindall of England and 2005 US Open winner Michael Campbell will join the ex-Jordan boss at the event, which also includes a Q&A session, gala dinner plus a charity auction.
Redknapp admitted the New Zealand golfer had nothing to fear from him on the course in Dubai.
He replied: “I don’t get on the green that often, I tend to lose my ball in the rough before I reach the greens.
“I love golf, I enjoy it. I’m not particularly good, I started playing too late to be a decent player.”
Bids to compete alongside one of the celebrities, or for the final place in the amateur tournament can be made online at www.swingagainstcancerauction.com. To purchase tickets, e-mail [email protected]
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