Harry is only candidate – Pulis

Redknapp is already the bookmakers’ favourite to succeed Fabio

Capello when his contract expires after next summer’s European

Championships. Pulis has regularly championed the cause of his

friend, and Tottenham’s form over the last two seasons has only

strengthened that belief. “I’ve known Harry for a long time; he’s a

very good judge of a player as he bought me in 1986,” joked the

Potters boss, referring to his move to Bournemouth from Newport

County. “It has to be an English manager this time and you look at

everyone out there and his credentials are better than anyone

else’s. “For me there is only one Englishman who could really do

the job and he is at the right time in his career – though

Tottenham won’t like me saying it. “He has everything.

Man-management is important, especially today with the egos you

have to deal with in professional football – he knows how to handle

people. “He understands and recognises the game and how stressful

it can be at times and how up and down players can be. “He gets the

best out of players; if you look at his record it is absolutely

fantastic. “He has gone to a club that potentially could be a top

club and he took them close in the Champions League last year

(reaching the quarter-finals) and they are a better side this year

than last.” The pair will come face-to-face at the Britannia

Stadium on Sunday but it is only a fortnight or so since the last

time they met. Early last month Redknapp underwent a heart

procedure and during his convalescence Pulis paid a visit. “I went

down and had a coffee with him a couple of weeks ago when he had

his operation. “He was talking about football with passion as he

always does. Pulis believes the signing of Scott Parker, who made a

£5million move from relegated West Ham, has been pivotal to

Redknapp’s plans. “I read a quote the other day that this is

probably the closest they have got to the 1960/61 side that won the

double under Bill Nicholson,” Pulis added. “The signing of Scott

Parker has probably been the best signing this season as he has

been outstanding. “Parker has knitted the group together and has

kept it nice and solid and has been the difference between them

winning and losing games. “He has definitely gelled both parts of

the team together because they attack and defend much better and

they are not as vulnerable as before. “But you can’t isolate one

player; they have Gareth Bale and Aaron Lennon with fantastic pace

and Luka Modric is a world-class player.” Spurs are only a point

behind second-placed Manchester United with a match in hand and

Pulis believes they could be genuine title challengers this season.

They have won their last six league matches and are currently the

form team. “They are one of the top-four sides this year but I

think Harry might be looking for more than that considering the way

they are going,” added Pulis. “This might be the team that pushes

the two Manchester clubs for the title. “They are the form team and

Tottenham will be looking for those clubs to slip up and give them

a chance.”