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Replay 'tough as I expected' - Harry

Posted on 8 March 2012  - 01:57

Harry Redknapp paid tribute to Stevenage after we ran out 3-1 winners in Wednesday night's FA Cup fifth round replay at White Hart Lane.

Replay 'tough as I expected' - Harry

The League One promotion challengers provided a stern test, not least after taking the lead from the penalty spot with only four minutes on the clock.

In the end, Jermain Defoe’s excellent double strike and Emmanuel Adebayor’s penalty saw us into the last eight.

We will now face Bolton at the Lane for the right to line-up at Wembley in the semi-finals.

“It was a difficult game, just what I expected,” reflected Harry.

“When I heard people saying we would smash this lot at home I thought ‘not a chance’.

“You only had to look at their record in terms of goals conceded away from home, very low, best in the division and a well-organised team who work their socks off.

“They are also dangerous on set-plays, every free-kick and corner comes in with a great delivery.

“They’ve also got some real competitors and they got off to a really good start with the penalty.

“I thought then ‘this is going to be a hard night’ but we came through in the end.

“Full credit to the lads, they showed good character to come back from 1-0 down. In the end we played some good stuff and got through.”

The positive feeling of winning the tie and being just one step from a Wembley semi-final was clouded somewhat after we picked up two injuries on the night.

The first looked serious as well as Michael Dawson was stretchered off in the eighth minute after taking an awkward fall on his right leg – terrible luck after he recently returned from a four-month lay-off.

“We’re not sure yet (on the extent of the injury) but it didn’t look good,” added Harry, who reported that the popular defender had gone to hospital.

Harry also confirmed that Aaron Lennon limped off in the first half with a hamstring injury.