Newcastle United will approach Portsmouth on Friday morning with an official offer to acquire Harry Redknapp as their new manager to lead the Toon. Question is, would Redknapp be able to do the job that those before him could not? Managers such as Allardyce, Gullit, Dalglish, Souness, Roeder and Robson.
The short answer is yes. The long answer is more complicated.
Redknapp has proven himself as a manager at Portsmouth in his two stays with the seaside club. However, his track record is less impressive when you consider his work at Southampton (26% games won), while he enjoyed moderate success at West Ham (37%) and Bournemouth (39%). In comparison, Sam Allardyce had a 33% winning record at Newcastle.
But it’s been Redknapp’s tenure at Portsmouth where he has developed into a manager worthy enough of being considered for the England manager position. A large part of his success has been his laser sharp eye for acquiring second tier players — whether it be top tier footballers who appear to be on their way down that few other teams were interested in (Sol Campbell, David James, Kanu), or players who are relatively unknown and unproven in the English market (Benjani, Muntari, Utaka).
Money sometimes buys happiness. For Newcastle United, those Mike Ashley millions could be enough to tempt Redknapp to try the almost impossible job of turning the black and white army into a formidable force once again.
For many people, Newcastle has been the butt of jokes for several seasons due to their poor performances on and off the field. However, they were an incredible team in the late 90s under the stewardship of Kevin Keegan playing some of the most attractive and attacking football that the Premier League had seen up until then.
To put Newcastle back on the football map, the time is now for Redknapp to join Newcastle. It’ll give him a few weeks to acquire the talent he needs to start the long journey of rebuilding this team into one that the city deserves. A winning team. A club to be proud of.
The challenge for Newcastle United is that if they’re unable to get Harry Redknapp, they have very few other decent choices left. Mike Ashley has to do whatever it takes to get ‘ol Harry, but I’m sure Portsmouth will have a thing or two to say about that.