So what now for Tottenham Hotspur?

Redknapp and Tottenham are now struggling for fifth and will need to make amends for next seasonTottenham’s slim chances of qualifying for the Champions League were well and truly crushed Tuesday night after a 1-0 defeat to Manchester City at Eastlands. While City can celebrate sealing a place in Europe’s elite competition for the first time, Spurs will need to rebuild over the summer to make sure that they can challenge for a top four finish next season.

Following last night’s defeat Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp admitted that the club will have to spend over the summer if they are to qualify for the Champions League next season. Redknapp said, “We’ve had Champions League Football for the first time since the Premier League started and you’ve got to keep improving, it’s hard to get in. We had control of that game for long, long periods, and with a little bit of tweaking again this summer, we’ll come back and try and get back into the Champions League.”

However, before Spurs sign anyone, they need to make sure that they keep hold of their star players. Top tier footballers demand to compete in the Champions League so Spurs will have to persuade the likes of Luka Modric and Rafael Van der Vaart to stay at White Hart Lane so they fight for a top four finish next season. Should the North London club fail to qualify for the Champions League for two successive years, then it’s inevitable that they will struggle to keep hold of their key members of their team.

It’s clear though that the squad need strengthening in some areas if they are to mount a serious challenge next season. The club lacks a natural goalscorer and it’s expected that Redknapp will look to shake up his forwards this summer. In addition tweaks need to made to the defence while a new goalkeeper may be in order following the high profile gaffes that Heurelho Gomes has made recently.

However, before they can focus on next season, Tottenham face a battle with Liverpool for 5th spot and qualification for the Europa League. With two games remaining, Spurs currently sit 6th in the table and trail Liverpool by two points. The two teams meet each other at Anfield on Sunday and a win for the home side would see them qualify for the Europa League at the expense of Tottenham.

Should Tottenham fail to play European football next season then it will be difficult for their fans to comprehend. However, when the supporters look back on the 2010/11 season, they will realise that the campaign was all about their journey in the Champions League. Expected to have a little impact in the tournament, Spurs produced some scintillating displays to defeat the likes of Werder Bremen, last year’s winners Inter Milan and seven times winners AC Milan on their way to the quarter finals where they were knocked out by Real Madrid. It’s clear that their journey in the competition took its toll on their league form as they haven’t won any one of their five games since being eliminated by Madrid.

Having failed to qualify for the Champions League, you would expect the next best thing would be to play in the Europa League next season. However, one man who isn’t bothered about playing in the competition is Spurs boss Harry Redknapp. Earlier this week Redknapp said that playing in the Europa League would majorly hamper the club’s chances of finishing in the top four next season.

He said, ‘Teams who get into the Europa League want to get out of it. Half of them put reserve teams out in the early stages and it’s difficult to play every Thursday and Sunday. It disrupts things. We didn’t have European football last year and we finished fourth. That was a big advantage to us.”

However, many people believe that European football attracts the top tier players. Should Tottenham not play in the Europa Cup next season, they may not be able to acquire the calibre of players that they will need to challenge for Champions League qualification next year.

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