Spurs manager Harry Redknapp has revealed that he was mugged during a midweek trip to Madrid to match last week’s Copa Del Rey clash between Atletico and Real Madrid.
Redknapp and assistant Kevin Bond were in the Spanish capital hatching a plan to prise Atletico star Diego Forlan away from the club. Instead he found himself parting with his cash in a less productive fashion.
He said: “I’m walking round the outside of the stadium, it’s a fantastic atmosphere, there’s all little stalls there selling sweets. 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 are you doing?’. The next thing he’s got my keys on the floor. 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.”
All the money from the Steven Pienaar transfer gone in an instant.
Redknapp at least retained some self-awareness through the ordeal.
He said: “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’.”
The incident was Redknapp’s most notable mugging since Espanyol took £2.4 million off him for Florin Raducioiu.