On this day: Harry Redknapp awarded bumper Portsmouth pay rise and admits Blues would be last job in football
On this day in 2007, Harry Redknapp was handed a bumper £700,000 pay rise to establish Pompey as a European force.
That was his reward for penning a new three-and-a-half year contract which was designed to keep him at Fratton Park until 2011.
And fans were in unison he was worth every penny.
Redknapp signed an extension to take his annual earnings up to a reported £2m.
The move was in recognition of another tremendous season for the Blues as they continued to shake the Premier League.
The then ambitious Sacha Gaydamak was targeting a glorious Pompey future at a new home at Horsea Island and a training ground complex in Titchfield.
And he wanted Redknapp to be part of that vision.
The Blues boss himself had admitted it would be his last job in football and was only too eager to tie himself to the club even longer.
Now the partnership which had left the Blues dreaming of European football was set to remain intact for another three-and-a-half years at least.
And fans were delighted.
Kevin Ryan, secretary of Portsmouth Supporters’ Club, central branch, said at the time: ‘Harry’s done a superb job, no doubt about that.
‘The club have progressed pretty quickly under him and some of his signings have been fantastic. If he’s got a rise like that then I say fair play. He deserves it.
‘Congratulations to Peter Storrie and Sacha Gaydamak for tying him down. It’s an amazing turnaround for Harry, seeing as many fans were against him coming back from Southampton.
‘Now I’d like to see our backroom staff being tied to similar contracts. As well as having our best team for years, we also have the best set-up, too.
‘Tony Adams is one I’d especially like to see stay. Who knows, maybe he can be Harry’s successor?’
Basher Benfield added: ‘I respect Harry as a manager, he’s done a great job for this football club.
‘I don’t think anyone is worth the kind of money being talked about but that’s the going rate and you have to accept that.
'At least it keeps Harry at the club and now he can carry on building and progressing.
‘I just hope he can take us on to the next level and give us European football.’
Redknapp’s new contract catapulted him into the top bracket of earners among Premier League managers.
And after putting pen to paper to extend his second spell, he told The News: ‘I had 18 months left so the owner came and asked me if I would want to extend my contract.
‘It didn’t take one minute to sort out.
‘It was not a decision really, I just wanted to do it, get on with it, and gets things tied up.
‘I had time left on my original contract but Peter Storrie and the owner want continuity at the club.
‘They have so many fantastic plans for the future of this club and want me to be part of it.
‘I suppose I haven’t done too bad here.
‘It’s not a shock they want me to stay, but it’s nice and I’m delighted.
‘I couldn’t see myself ever wanting to go anywhere else. I cannot see myself ever having another job.
‘This will be it for me, definitely. ‘I enjoy it here, I’ve no intention of going anywhere else. Another job wouldn’t interest me.
‘The club is in great shape and moving forward. ‘We finished in the top half of the Premier League last year and want to do it again this year.
‘I’m not ready to pack it in just yet, Alan Curbishley only said the other day about how the managers in the top five were not the younger guys. Age doesn’t come into it. ‘But this will be my last job in football, for sure.’