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Redknapp insists Spurs are not favourites for fourth spot

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Harry Redknapp is the only manager to break the top-four stranglehold in the FA Cup during the last decade - but he believes a reality check is needed if his Tottenham side are considered favourites this year.

Since Everton's triumph in 1995, Redknapp's Portsmouth are the sole team to lift the trophy from outside the Barclays Premier League's traditional heavyweights of Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool. Spurs now have to get past Redknapp's former side to reach this year's final and he is wary of the threat Avram Grant's men pose, as well as playing down the reputation of his new club being FA Cup specialists.

"They say that it's a cup club but it's nearly 20 years since they won," Redknapp said. "I don't know who's expectations these are. What do people expect? Why are we expected to win it now?"

He added: "Who's won the FA Cup outside the top four apart from Portsmouth in the last 15 years? Only one team has won it outside the top four in that time so I don't know why we're expected to win it."

Pompey won the cup two years ago and since then Redknapp has joined Spurs and taken them within sight of a Champions League place.

He added: "We're fighting on two fronts and I would take either of them - if we do then what a fantastic season we've had. If we achieve none we've still moved forward a million per cent. If we could win them both it would be incredible."

Redknapp faces injury problems ahead of the semi-final, with Vedran Corluka and Tom Huddlestone needing checks on ankle problems, while Michael Dawson needs his Achilles injury assessed.

Aaron Lennon is still sidelined by a groin injury but the good news is Ledley King is approaching full fitness following a thigh complaint. If King fails to make the Wembley semi-final, he could still make the clash against Arsenal the following Wednesday.

"It's a massive week but it's better than being stuck at the bottom in a relegation battle," Redknapp said. "Portsmouth will be a hard game, they'll have four or five who will come back and they'll make a difference.

"We were lucky to beat them down there and I saw them beat Liverpool at home. They are very dangerous and they have players who can cause you problems. And I have a lot of respect for their manager."

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Tottenham Hotspur
Football
Premier League

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