Sherwood sends stark warning

Tim Sherwood (AFP)
Tim Sherwood (AFP)

London - Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood says that all his players are playing for their futures at the club and has vowed not to mollycoddle them in the pursuit of success.

Sherwood bemoaned the lack of character in his squad after Saturday's 4-0 loss at Chelsea in the Premier League and now faces two taxing home games against Benfica and Arsenal.

Spurs tackle Portuguese league leaders Benfica at White Hart Lane in the first leg of their Europa League last 16 tie on Thursday, before hosting the north London derby three days later.

The loss to Chelsea left Spurs four points below fourth-place Manchester City, having played three more games, and with hopes of Champions League qualification fading, Sherwood has urged his players to produce a reaction.

"They know how I am and how I felt about what happened (against Chelsea)," he said on Wednesday.

"We are moving on. You can't dwell on it. They are all men, they all appreciate that I am singing it from the heart, not from the script. I'm not an actor; I work on impulse.

"I'm never going to take a step back. I'm just going to shoot from the hip. That's what I'm like. I'm a manager, not a babysitter.

"A lot of players here are playing for their future and I think they realise that now. I'm going to have a good look at the whole squad and see who I need to keep and who I need to bring in.

"They have that chance between now and the end of the season to prove they want to play for a giant club like Tottenham."

Sherwood was handed an 18-month contract last December after Andre Villas-Boas was sacked as manager, but has had to contend with press speculation linking Louis van Gaal and Frank de Boer with his job.

He revealed that he had spoken to Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy following the defeat at Chelsea, but said that he had not asked for assurances about his position.

"There was no sit-down meeting, nothing more than what I normally do.

"I've seen him a few times," Sherwood said during a press conference to preview the Benfica game.

"I'm planning for next season.

"There's no point me planning if someone else is coming in. I've not asked for any assurances. I've an 18-month contract and I expect to be here a lot longer than that."

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