Harry Redknapp makes his first White Hart Lane return as current side Queens Park Rangers travel to Tottenham Hotspur this afternoon

Picture: Action Images

Picture: Action Images

First published in Sport

Harry Redknapp makes his first return to White Hart Lane since being sacked as Spurs boss two years ago when Queens Park Rangers visit Tottenham Hotspur this afternoon (1.30pm).

After finishing fourth with Tottenham during the 2011/12 season but missing out on the Champions League due to Chelsea’s improbable win, Redknapp was relieved of his duties by chairman Daniel Levy.

The sack came just months after Redknapp was seemingly a shoo-in to take the England job following the sudden resignation of Fabio Capello in the build up to the 2012 European Championships.

Since being removed as Spurs manager, Redknapp has seen his stock fall somewhat, spending several months out of work before succeeding Mark Hughes at Loftus Road in November of the same year.

Unable to prevent the R’s slide into the Championship, Redknapp guided the west London outfit back into the top flight at the first time of asking – albeit via the play-offs – and will now look to avoid an immediate return to the Football League.

The 67-year-old saw his side put in an encouraging display in defeat against Hull City last Saturday but will be acutely aware of the fact performances alone do not put points on the board.

Six new signings have been made following Rangers’ return to the top-flight, with Juventus wing-back Mauricio Isla and Napoli attacker Eduardo Vargas the most recent – both joining on loan.

Ex-Manchester United and England defender Rio Ferdinand has been re-united with Redknapp, who helped launch his career at first club West Ham United, whilst Cardiff City defender Steven Caulker has joined in an £8m deal.

Netherlands international midfielder Leroy Fer and former Cardiff City midfielder Jordon Mutch have both also joined for a total of £14m.

There has also been the loan return of Loic Remy, who spent last season at Newcastle United before failing a medical with Liverpool ahead of a proposed move this summer.

Redknapp has a fully-fit squad to choose from and could hand debuts to Isla and Vargas, with the R’s set to continue in a 3-5-2 system.

Spurs head coach Mauricio Pochettino is sweating on the fitness of Vlad Chiriches, who will undergo a late fitness test.

Kyle Walker is sidelined with a groin injury still and Kyle Naughton is suspended, leaving a sizeable hole at right-back, which could be filled by Eric Dier.

Probable line-ups:

Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris; Dier, Kaboul, Dawson, Rose; Capoue, Bentaleb; Lennon, Eriksen, Lamela; Adebayor.

Queens Park Rangers: Green; Caulker, Ferdinand, Dunne; Simpson, Barton, Mutch, Faurlin, Traore; Austin, Remy.

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