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Harry draws positives

Harry Redknapp said he couldn't fault the lads after the goalless draw against Villa on Saturday.

Harry Redknapp said he couldn't fault the lads after the goalless draw against Villa on Saturday.

We had the better of a tense encounter at the Lane but simply couldn't find a way past the best defence in the Barclays Premier League - Villa have now only conceded 18 goals in 24 matches.

Brad Friedel produced his best saves to deny Ledley King, David Bentley and Tom Huddlestone but the most notable part of Villa's defensive display was the way they threw themselves in the way of shots.

Jermain Defoe was denied a late shout for a penalty when he appeared to be brought down by Stiliyan Petrov. That was with three minutes left and there was still time for Friedel to save from Defoe again and Peter Crouch's backheel attempt to go agonisingly wide.

It wasn't to be, but Harry spoke positively afterwards. "I thought we played well and that's always the main thing for me.

"We created all the chances but just couldn't get the break. I thought we were the better side and I thought the same when we drew at Villa Park.

"They got some great blocks in and their centre-halves kept throwing their bodies in the way. They did that well and they are well-known for doing that. I couldn't fault the way we played.

"It would have been great to get the three points but it wasn't to be. We've still only lost once in the last 12 games and we're on a good run, playing well. We played well at Birmingham last weekend, excellent at Leeds, the squad's looking strong, so we're okay."

As for the penalty claim, Harry said: "I haven't seen a replay. The lads said it was a penalty but I honestly don't know."

The draw left us in fifth place and a point behind Liverpool after the Reds' 1-0 win against Everton in the Merseyside derby. Villa and City, who lost at Hull, are two points behind in sixth and seventh respectively.

"It was a big result for Liverpool, they ground out a result," added Harry. "It's their weekend but it will be someone else's weekend next weekend and someone else's the week after. That's how it goes. It's going to be tight and go to the wire."