Harry Redknapp Explains Why He Accepted Call to Help Keep Birmingham in Championship

Tom Power

​Harry Redknapp has explained the reasoning behind his decision to accept the arduous task of keeping Birmingham City in the Championship.

The 70-year-old was appointed as the club's new manager on Tuesday morning following the resignation of Gianfranco Zola, and told the Alan Brazil breakfast show on ​talkSPORT why he had decided to take up the chance to lead the Blues to safety.

Birmingham find themselves two places and three points above the drop zone with three matches left of the 2016/17 campaign and, when asked what on Earth had possessed him to accept the club's offer, Redknapp admitted that the opportunity to keep the club up would save him from boredom!

He joked: "I get fed up sitting around doing nothing. It gets me out the house! It is a real challenge. I will come and live up here until the end of the season and throw myself into it.

"If I can keep them up then we can sit down and talk about going forward."

Redknapp went to state just how quickly his appointment came about about Zola left St. Andrew's on Monday, and revealed that he drove to London later that day to hold a brief discussion with the club's owners about the position - although his wife wasn't best pleased with his decision to accept the job.

He continued: "I got a phone call last night from the people at Birmingham.

"I drove to London, had a meeting for ten to 15 minutes, sat down and said 'yeah, sure I will come and do it, no problem'. I got home and my wife said: 'are you mad!'

"Birmingham is a proper club. It is a good club. They are in a precarious position - we are only three points above the relegation zone and we have got the worst goal difference as well.


"I've gone in there and said, 'listen, I don't want nothing, I will come and do it'. The money I am not interested in."

Birmingham were in the top six of the Championship when Gary Rowett was shockingly relieved of his duties and replaced by Zola on December 14, but now find themselves in a fight to stave off relegation to the third tier.

A trip to bitter city rivals Aston Villa, as well as clashes with Huddersfield Town and Bristol City, are the trio of matches that Brum have to retain their second division status, and Redknapp added that it would be a tough ask to keep the Midlands outfit up after a turbulent season.

He said: "They are three tough games. It is not going to be easy but it is a challenge and I look forward to it.

"Steve Cotterill is going to come in with me. How he is not in work managing I don't know. He is one of the top coaches I have worked with. We will give it everything we have got it, we will throw ourselves into it, and hopefully we will get the win or whatever we need to stay up.

"They have won 2 games out of 22. I ain't got a magic wand. I ain't going to go in there and they are suddenly going to turn into Real Madrid. If I can get them going and get a bit of belief back in and pick up a win or whatever we need to stay up, that's all I can do."

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