Harry: Vieira nearly joined Spurs

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Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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Former Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has revealed how close he came to signing Patrick Vieira during his reign at White Hart Lane.

The current QPR manager said in his new book, A Man Walks On To a Pitch, which is being serialised in the Daily Mail, that he met the former Arsenal enforcer at his house before the Frenchman ultimately decided to remain at Inter Milan in 2009.

Despite his strong connections with Spurs’ north London rivals, Redknapp felt Vieira was unfazed by the negative attention the move would inevitably attract.

“I met him at his house in Hampstead and he had no fear about what people would think or what reception he would get. He had enough confidence in his ability to just brush it away,” he said in the Mail.

“I remember talking to Daniel Levy, our chairman, about him. He said the crowd would be hostile. I knew that – but if he had enough bottle to want to put on our white shirt after all that had gone before, I thought it said something about the man.”

In the end though, Vieira decided to stay put in Italy for a few months before he moved to Manchester City in January 2010.

Redknapp also revealed his regret at not signing Luis Suarez – before he left Ajax to join Liverpool in 2011 – after the Uruguayan received a glowing reference from Ruud Gullit.

“Despite all that has happened in his career since, one of the biggest regrets of my life in management is not taking Luis Suarez to Tottenham when we had the chance,” he added. ” ‘You’ve got to take him, Harry,’ Ruud Gullit told me. ‘He’s fantastic.'”

Redknapp said that he was initially unsure about Suarez, but when he decided to sign him the asking price became a problem for Spurs.

He said: “Just when I was on the verge of taking the plunge, the price went up. In the end he was sold for £22.8million to Liverpool. We wouldn’t have paid that.”

Published: Thursday 9th October 2014 by The News Editor

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