Harry Redknapp has signed a new contract at Birmingham City, and sees no reason why he can’t lead them to promotion to the Premier League next term.
Redknapp was appointed Blues manager in April, less than a month ago, tasked with the job of keeping the club in the Championship. Despite opening with a narrow defeat against Aston Villa, he led them to a 2-0 win against Huddersfield Town and, on the final day of the campaign, a 1-0 win at Bristol City was enough to ensure they avoided slipping into the third-tier.
On Friday it was confirmed that the 70-year-old has agreed to remain in charge of the St Andrews’ club for next season. Whilst many feel the priority for City is simply to avoid a repeat of their flirtation with League One, Redknapp believes there is enough potential in the club for him to replicate the success he had when transforming one of his former clubs, Portsmouth, into a top-flight force.
“I really enjoyed the three weeks I had here, I got a real buzz, so it was an easy decision for me to make,” Redknapp told the official club website. “The sell out 28,000 crowd in that Huddersfield Town game, the way the players performed, there’s great people around the club. I just thought ‘let’s see if we can put together a competitive team and have a go at it at the other end of the league’.
“And I think we can. You know, it reminds me of Portsmouth in my first year: they were struggling at the bottom of the Championship, we put together a team in the summer and I didn’t really know what to expect – but we ended up winning the league. If we can turn things around like that here, in a similar kind of way, then it would be fantastic, but I know it’s a big challenge.
“If we can do things right and bring in good players to go with the good players we already have here, then we could have a chance. I’m looking forward to it. Without a doubt, the owners are ambitious people, they want to take the club forward. This is a big club, a proper club, fantastic supporters, proper people. There’s lots to do over the summer and I’m sure we will all give it a go.”