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Harry Redknapp says Tottenham penalties were justified

Penalties were 'blatant' - Redknapp

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp defended referee Terje Hauge after the Norwegian awarded Spurs three penalties in the 4-1 win against FC Twente.

Two of the three were dubious as the London club won by a flattering margin.

But Redknapp said: "The first two penalties were blatant and I don't know how you couldn't give them."

And of midfielder Rafael van der Vaart's dismissal for a second bookable offence he added: "It wasn't malicious. It was a bad forward's challenge."

Van der Vaart's red card ended an eventful evening for the Dutchman, who will miss the trip to Inter Milan on 20 October. He missed the first penalty - given after Peter Wisgerhof was adjudged to have brought down Peter Crouch during the melee as a cross arrived - and gave Spurs the lead with an exquisitely taken goal shortly after half-time.


Roman Pavlyuchenko doubled Tottenham's advantage with another spot-kick after Gareth Bale was brought down by Roberto Rosales only for Nacer Chadli to pull one back for the Dutch champions.

Van der Vaart's 61st minute dismissal did not help the home side but they had a moment of good fortune when Nicky Kuiper was harshly punished for blocking a Pavlyuchenko strike with his arm.

Russian striker Pavlyuchenko converted the third penalty of the game before Bale scored the fourth goal for Redknapp's side.

"It was exciting stuff," added Redknapp. "The first two penalties were blatant.

"Crouch was pulled down, wrestled to the floor. For the second one Bale beat the fellow like he did all night and was pulled down. It was a blatant penalty.

"On the third, the ball travelled a long way and it was a soft penalty but you see them given.

"There was nothing wrong with Van der Vaart's goal and it was a fantastic finish from Bale at the end."

Redknapp argued the result justified his decision to field an attacking team with Pavlyuchenko and Crouch up front and Luka Modric and Van der Vaart ploughing forward from midfield.

"We picked an open team who went for it," added the 63-year-old. "We could have played with one up with Van der Vaart behind, but went for it and got four goals.

"It was a fantastic result. We won 4-1 so I picked the right team. It's not a problem.

"You pick different teams for different games. I felt we'd take a chance but there are certain games where you wouldn't do that.

Twente coach Preud'homme 'frustrated' with decisions

"It was a great night for us. It was a great atmosphere and we won the game. You can't do much more than that."

FC Twente manager Michel Preud'homme was unhappy his side did not get a penalty for a perceived Crouch handball at 2-1.

"If you give a penalty to one side for stopping the ball with the hand you have to penalise the other team for doing the same thing," he stated.

"We fought back to 2-1 and took many risks to get back into the game. But that third penalty changed everything. The third penalty took a long time to award. Now we have six referees and they all have to speak with each other."

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see also
Tottenham 4-1 FC Twente
29 Sep 10 |  Europe
Champions League photos
29 Sep 10 |  Football

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