Former Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp has admitted that Eden Hazard wanted to come to Spurs in the summer of 2012 but instead decided to sign for Chelsea instead after the Lilywhites missed out on Champions League qualification.
Hazard was one of the most sought after young footballers in the world at that point after enjoying a prolific 2011-12 season at Lille.
Until the final few months of the campaign, Spurs looked like they could push the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United for the title that season but a late collapse meant that Redknapp’s side had to settle for fourth.
Unfortunately for the Lilywhites, Chelsea, who finished in sixth place that season, went on to win the Champions League title after they emerged as victors in a penalty shoot-out at the Allianz Arena against Bayern Munich in the final.
That meant that Chelsea not only became the first London side to be crowned European champions but also that they would enter next year’s competition at Tottenham’s expense.
Redknapp revealed that Hazard might have instead moved to Spurs had things panned out differently.
“We finished fourth that year, Chelsea finished sixth, they won the Champions League and we didn’t make it. He ended up going to Chelsea.”
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As is typical with Spurs, we were the last side to be unfairly disadvantaged by that rule, with changes being made from the subsequent season so that five teams can qualify for the Champions League if a team that finishes below the CL spots go on to win the competition.
Additionally, Redknapp deserves a lot of the blame for the fact that we had to settle for fourth that season. We looked on course to finishing second or third but our form started dipping as soon as Harry started publicly flirting with the England job. That was partly why he was sacked at the end of that season.
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