Tuesday 21 November 2017

'Harry's jealous'

Mancini puts Spurs boss in his place over claims City's surge solely about money

Harry Redknapp's wife, Sandra, whose husband has made her one of the most discussed spouses on the press conference circuit, was drawn into Roberto Mancini's acerbic response to the Tottenham Hotspur manager's repeated claims that Manchester City have bought their way to success in a way his club have not.

The Italian's decision to do so was based on a linguistic misunderstanding, it being put to him that Redknapp's obsession with City's spending constituted jealousy, with the Italian translating gelosia as "to guard jealously". "He is jealous for his wife, I hope. Not for Manchester City that we're spending money," Mancini said.

The City manager's insouciance about Redknapp's repeated characterisation of Spurs against City as a David and Goliath encounter does not reflect the indignation felt higher up the club -- City consulted lawyers over one of Redknapp's periodic outbursts against them two years ago -- but it provided an effective riposte. "He can borrow money from us if he doesn't have money," Mancini said, calmly detailing some of the players on whom Tottenham have spent £160m in three years.

"We have good players but Tottenham have the same I think -- (Rafael) Van der Vaart, (Gareth) Bale, (William) Gallas, (Younes) Kaboul, (Aaron) Lennon, (Emmanuel) Adebayor, (Luka) Modric. I don't think that these are young players without experience. For this reason they can win the title."


Adebayor is a source of particular acrimony. City are adamant that Spurs are paying £100,000 a week of the striker's wages for his loan this season, also retaining his image rights. Spurs insist they are not, though even a 50:50 split constitutes £75,000 a week of Tottenham's money.

Redknapp is spending too, Mancini said. "If you have a chance to spend, to buy good players, if you can I think that (you will). They have bought good players. Maybe not like us in the last two years but in the last 10 years they've bought good players and spent money like all the other teams. If you stay always there (at the top) it's different. For us it was complicated because (we couldn't) wait 10 years.

"All people say this (about us). (Redknapp) is not the first. I don't know -- City six years ago was in the Championship.

"For Tottenham or (Manchester) United it's different I think, because when you play always at the top you maybe only need to change two or three players every year. The difference is that every time City go to buy a player who maybe cost £8million or £9m, we get asked to pay £20m. This is the problem."

City's current £195m losses would benefit from a successful outcome to the talks which began in Paris yesterday between Carlos Tevez's representative, Kia Joorabchian, and Paris Saint-German's sporting director, Leonardo.

Any deal will probably go to the transfer window deadline, but Mancini spelt out that it is unthinkable Tevez will come back to City. "This is impossible. It won't happen," the manager said.

Confidentiality prevents Mancini revealing why Tevez has been paid £198,000 a week not to play for the past two and a half months.

Mancini was also indignant about Wolves manager Mick McCarthy's criticism over his imaginary red-card waving at Wigan on Monday. "For us it's nothing this -- it's normal," he said.

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