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Players 'gave everything' - Harry

Posted on 5 March 2012  - 00:37

Harry Redknapp was full of praise for the players after Sunday’s 3-1 defeat against Manchester United at White Hart Lane.

Players 'gave everything' - Harry

The manager described it as ‘soul destroying’ to go in at half-time trailing 1-0 after dominating long periods of the first half.

Statistics showed possession at 58 per cent in our favour in the first half but despite that territorial advantage, we couldn’t find the crucial opening goal.

Emmanuel Adebayor thought he’d broken the deadlock when he blocked Louis Saha’s effort on the line, before backheeling the ball home. However, celebrations were cut short as the ‘goal’ was disallowed for handball from the initial shot.

United had created little but managed to forge ahead in the final minute of the half after Wayne Rooney headed home Ashley Young’s corner.

The lads started the second half with intent again as David De Gea saved Jake Livermore’s low drive and Benoit Assou-Ekotto clipped the top of the crossbar.

But again, just as it seemed like we’d have to be the team that scored next, United capitalised on a moment of slack defensive play from a throw-in and Ashley Young volleyed home the second goal. Young’s second, a 25-yarder into the top corner, ended the contest although Jermain Defoe struck a late consolation.

“I came in at half-time and couldn’t believe we were 1-0 down,” reflected Harry.

“The players did everything I asked them to do in the first half. I thought they were outstanding.

“The lads in midfield, Jake and Sandro, pressed Scholes and Carrick, got in amongst them, stopped them playing balls to Rooney into those holes he likes to pick the ball up in.

“We functioned so well and there was only one team that should have been in front at half-time and yet we came in 1-0 down, we didn’t mark at a corner and Rooney scored.

“I said at half-time ‘we can win this game’ and we started the same way in the second half.

“We got on top again, De Gea made a great save but then we switched off from a throw-in and suddenly we found ourselves 2-0 down.

“We just needed a break. When you are 2-0 down after you have bossed a game, mentally it’s difficult. You are thinking ‘how are we losing this game when we’re playing so well?’

“But there are lots of positives. I was well pleased with the performances and we’ll pick ourselves up again.”

Meanwhile, Harry confirmed that Gareth missed out due to an overnight virus and reported that Niko Kranjcar had been struggling with an ankle problem.