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Redknapp backs Spurs to win race for third

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp is confident his side can still overtake Arsenal and claim a third-place finish in the Premier League.

sports Updated: Mar 25, 2012 11:16 IST

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp is confident his side can still overtake Arsenal and claim a third-place finish in the Premier League.

Redknapp's fourth-placed side drew 0-0 at Chelsea on Saturday to keep their five-point lead over the fifth-placed Blues.

Third spot belongs to Arsenal, whose 3-0 home win over Aston Villa on Saturday extended their advantage over their north London rivals to three points.

However, Redknapp remains convinced his side, who were 10 points clear of the Gunners a few weeks ago, could close that gap however.

"There will be twists and turns yet," he said. "Arsenal have got some tough games - they have got Man City at home, Chelsea at home - so it's all to play for still.

"It's in our favour but not long ago we were 10 points clear. It can all change.

"We have got to keep picking up results. We have got decent games, not easy ones but we have to win six of the last eight if we can.

"We would have a chance if we did that. They are decent enough games and we can win some for sure. Third place is still there for us.

"Arsenal have had a great run but they have had a bit of luck with a last minute goal at Liverpool when they had been battered. Then they got a last minute goal at home to Newcastle.

"Credit to them, they have kept going but luck can turn. Maybe we will start knocking a few late goals in and things won't go their way.

"It's all to play for still. It's not a done deal that Arsenal will finish third."

Chelsea are facing up to the fact that Champions League qualification will prove beyond them if they cannot begin a winning run straight away.

Blues interim manager Roberto Di Matteo conceded that his players now faced a difficult task in saving their league campaign.

"It's going to be difficult now but there are still eight games to play and we have to win as many as we can," he said.

"Fourth spot is very important for this club. For the future of the club it is top priority.

"To make the gap up we would have to win all of them. We will just have to try to win the next one and then go for the one after that."

Di Matteo also admitted that energy levels in his squad will low on the plane to Portugal for Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Benfica.

"We will have to assess the fitness and energy levels and try to put a team together to play against Benfica and be competitive as we have so little time between the games to recover," he said.

Both sides hit the woodwork, with Chelsea's Juan Mata seeing a free-kick bounce off a post before Tottenham's Gareth Bale hit the bar with a header seconds after Gary Cahill had blocked a goal-bound effort from Emmanuel Adebayor.

First Published: Mar 25, 2012 11:14 IST