Bring it on, Arsene! Redknapp insists stuttering Spurs can still pip Arsenal to third spot
21:55 GMT, 25 March 2012
Harry Redknapp has told Arsene Wenger to 'bring it on' as he fired a defiant message to Arsenal in the race for third.
Arsenal's win over Aston Villa and Tottenham's draw at Chelsea has left Redknapp's side three points adrift of their fierce rivals.
Spurs were at one stage 13 points clear of the Gunners, but a dramatic turnaround in fortunes for both sides has resulted in the north London clubs swapping places.
Two points dropped Harry Redknapp (right) saw Spurs held at Stamford Bridge
But Redknapp remains defiant in his quest to finish above Arsenal, after saying: 'Third place isn't out of reach and I still think we will finish above Arsenal, bring it on Arsene.
'It's tough this year. Man City are a certainty and Man United too, Arsenal have been there every year, Chelsea, Liverpool, with the money they spent they would get stronger, you thought it would be even harder to make it this year.
'A month ago, we were nailed on. It would be a bigger blow if we don't make it now.'
Tottenham are still keeping a close eye on Chelsea in the battle for the fourth and final Champions League spot next season.
Spurs remain five points ahead of their London rivals with eight games left to play. And Redkmapp feels Roberto Di Matteo side's current involvement in the Champions League could play a key role in Tottenham staying in the top four.
Redknapp said: 'They (Chelsea) have the Champions League to think about, of course. It'll be tough over in Portugal but I think they'll beat Benfica over two legs and then obviously play Barcelona.
'We are all hoping for that because we all want to come here and watch it, I certainly do.'
Denied: Petr Cech saved from Rafael van der Vaart (left) from close range
Meanwhile, Chelsea keeper Petr Cech feels this season would be a wasted if the Blues do not qualify for European football's elite club competition next season.
He said: 'If we don't qualify for the Champions League it is a year lost in the progression of the club.
'You always have years when you go through the transition in the team and the team needs to be rebuilt. Or you have changes in terms of managers and players.
'For a big club you can accept that the team does not win the league because it is in transition, but you can't afford to slip out of Champions League spots.
'The big teams are about the Champions League, and the importance is that it is much better than the Europa League.'