Tottenham Hotspur Vs Manchester City, Sun 28 Aug 2011

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Harry Redknapp insists Tottenham can win the Barclays Premier League title this season.

Spurs seemed genuine contenders for the title last term until a dip in form during the second half of the campaign saw them fall away before they ended the year in fifth position, 18 points behind winners Manchester United.

While Spurs have struggled in the transfer market this summer, United, neighbours City, Liverpool and Chelsea have embarked upon spending sprees while Arsenal are sure to step up their activity in the transfer market soon following the departures of Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas.

The fact that Spurs have only been able to sign Brad Friedel on a free transfer and bring in Emmanuel Adebayor on loan means that they are currently 80/1 outsiders to clinch their first league title in 51 years.

Redknapp has been buoyed by Adebayor's arrival though, and appears to have won his battle to keep influential playmaker Luka Modric at the club despite Chelsea's pursuit of the star this summer.

For that reason, Redknapp thinks his team are a match for any of their rivals and reckons topping the table next summer is a possibility.

He said: "The favourites would be Chelsea, Man Utd and Man City, but it's not impossible for Liverpool to win it this year and I wouldn't write Arsenal off.

"They will be strong again and I wouldn't write Tottenham off this year either. It's not impossible."

Roberto Mancini, unsurprisingly, has been a busy man in the transfer window this summer, with Nasri, Sergio Aguero and Gael Clichy moving to the Etihad Stadium to bolster a squad already gleaming with stellar names such as Carlos Tevez and David Silva.

Redknapp saw his team pip City to fourth two years ago, but the 64-year-old underlined the difference between the two teams yesterday by claiming that Mancini now has a better squad at his disposal than Barcelona.

Nevertheless, Redknapp maintains that the likes of Rafael van der Vaart, Gareth Bale and Modric could grace any team in the league - something which gives him renewed optimism for the season ahead.

"It's hard to compete but we have good players here so we will compete with anybody," Redknapp added.

"We will be right there, pushing this year. It's hard to compete with them in terms of wages and spending but we have some quality and I'm happy with the way they are shaping up."

Redknapp thinks City, who face Tottenham at White Hart Lane on Sunday, are destined to win trophies if wealthy owner Sheikh Mansour remains at the club.

The Spurs boss admits he has been baffled at the extravagant sums City pay for transfers and wages, but has warned that winning trophies remains the main barometer by which success should be judged.

"In terms of spending and everything else they are the biggest but they haven't got the tradition of Man United, Arsenal or Liverpool," Redknapp added. "For me Manchester United are still the biggest team."

Despite having made only two new signings of note so far this summer, Redknapp is sure he will add more players to his squad by Wednesday night's 11pm transfer deadline.

Spurs are locked in negotiations over a move for West Ham's Scott Parker and Lassana Diarra has also been strongly linked with the club.

With question marks over the long-term fitness of William Gallas and Ledley King, Redknapp may consider a move for a centre-half after missing out on Phil Jones earlier this summer.

Mancini has warned Manchester United that their city is now home to two of Europe's top clubs.

The Manchester City boss has told United they will have to make room for their neighbours on the highest platform.

The rivalry between the two clubs has reached a new level of intensity because of City's dramatic Abu Dhabi-funded rise to become serious title challengers.

City will also compete in the Champions League for the first time this season and, after a series of exciting, big-money signings, Mancini feels they are already up with the continent's best.

The Italian said: "Manchester City is now a top club in Europe.

"We don't have a big history like United but at the moment every player wants to come to Manchester City.

"This is important for the club and also for the city. For Manchester it is important to have two big squads.

"Manchester United are the last team to win the Barclays Premier League and Chelsea are a strong team, but we are very close to these two teams."

City have started their Barclays Premier League campaign impressively with victories over Swansea and Bolton.

Mancini could hand a debut to Samir Nasri, signed for #24million from Arsenal this week.

Nasri could get an interesting reception at the home of the Gunners' fiercest rivals but he has tormented them in the past, not least by scoring four times against them last season.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Emmanuel Adebayor
European News
David Silva
Scott Parker
Ledley King
Manchester City
Carlos Tevez
Phil Jones
Premier League
Brad Friedel
Gael Clichy
Luka Modric
Rafael Van der Vaart
Lassana Diarra
Gareth Bale
William Gallas
Samir Nasri

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