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Tottenham manager Redknapp rules out Diego Forlan, 'mugged by local thieves'

by Byo24NEWS Sports
22 Jan 2011 at 15:03hrs | Views
A trip to watch Atletico striker Diego Forlan in the Madrid derby ended badly for Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp after he was mugged by local thieves.

Redknapp was in the Spanish capital to take in the second leg of the quarter-final clash of the Copa del Rey, which saw Real beat local rivals Atletico 1-0 to reach the semi-finals of the competition.

Redknapp's evening took a turn for the worse prior to kick-off when he and Spurs assistant manager Kevin Bond were walking around the Vicente Calderon stadium. Two unknown men approached Redknapp, fell to their knees and started tugging at his trouser leg to distract him while four others snatched cash and other belongings from his pockets.

"I'm walking round the outside of the stadium, it's a fantastic atmosphere, there's all little stalls there selling sweets," Redknapp explained. "I got some sweets, me and Kevin, and it was so packed. The next thing there's two guys on their knees in front of me and I felt someone pull my overcoat.

"I thought 'What's that?', and didn't take any notice. The next thing there's two guys on their knees in front of me and they've got my trousers and they keep doing this (tugging) with them, pulling them. I thought 'What are you doing?' The next thing he's got my keys on the floor. I didn't know whether to knee him in the gob or not. And I thought 'Is he a blind man or someone having trouble walking properly. What are they doing, these two blokes?'

"I'm going: 'Let go of my trousers', pushing them away. While I'm doing that they're rifling my pockets, there were about six of them. And then they went. I thought 'What are they doing?'. I went to put my hand in my pockets and realised what they'd done. They took everything. All my money, credit cards, everything really."

Luckily for Redknapp, his passport remained untouched in his top pocket and he also did not lose his phone. The Tottenham boss did not report the incident to police and had to borrow money off Bond to pay for a taxi back to his hotel and for dinner on Thursday night before returning to the UK.

He admitted the incident had unsettled him and he left the stadium 15 minutes before the end of the game, which was won thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo's first-half strike. He does not believe that the attackers knew who they were targeting.

"They probably didn't know who I was but they had a result, I'll tell you that," said Redknapp, who has been linked with a move for Atletico striker Diego Forlan. "I wasn't wearing anything flash. I had an overcoat on. I just probably looked stupid or something, and they thought 'Here's one here, he's not Spanish, obviously, and we're looking for a foreigner.' They were probably in this restaurant we were in, drinking the best wine and having the best steak there. Me and Kevin didn't have enough money to have a glass of wine."

Redknapp joked that Bond may have been in on the theft.

"I don't know what Kevin was doing while it was going on," Redknapp said. "He said 'I saw them doing it.' And I said: 'Why didn't you do anything then? I thought: 'Strange that, Kev.' I hope he wasn't part of the gang! He's got a few quid on him today."

Redknapp saw Diego Forlan in action for Atletico but he said a move was very unlikely, revealing that the player's wage demands would be akin to a mugging of another sort.

"Diego Forlan has been mentioned but we are not going to get near their wages," Redknapp said. "They are on £100,000 plus a week - they are not going to come here. The chairman would not be paying £100,000 or more a week to players that is for sure. Forlan's an interesting player. I didn't speak to anyone last night about him, I just went and watched the game really."

Source - Byo24NEWS

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