How ex-Portsmouth boss Harry Redknapp reacted to goal bonus request as part of Jermain Defoe deal from Spurs

‘What do you think we're paying £13m for? For him to miss them!’

By Mark McMahon
Tuesday, 2nd November 2021, 4:55 am

That’s the hilarious response Harry Redknapp gave Jermain Defoe’s mum when she apparently asked for a goal bonus as part of the then Spurs striker’s January transfer deadline day move to Pompey in 2008.

The late deal to bring the England forward to Fratton Park had reached an impasse, according to Redknapp, as he recalled the incident when appearing on the BBC’s Sacked in the Morning podcast.

And with patience running thin as the clock ticked down, the Blues’ FA Cup-winning manager felt the need to bring some realism to proceedings, especially when Defoe was being offered a reported ‘£60,000’ per week by the then Premier League outfit.

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It clearly worked, as the former West Ham youth product signed on the dotted line, with the Blues forking out £7.5m for the striker.

And looking back on it, Redknapp can now see the funny side of it – even when exaggerating the fee Pompey paid Spurs.

He told Sacked in the Morning: ‘When we took him, the chairman's doing the deal with the chief executive and his mum was there.

‘He (the chairman) didn't want a row with his mum, I must be truthful.

Jermain Defoe scored 17 goals in 36 appearances for Pompey.

‘The chairman comes out (and says) "Harry, we can't get this deal done”.

'I said "Why?” and he said “We have a problem. His mum. We've made him a fantastic offer, but we can't get the deal done. Can you come in (and help)”.

‘So I go in (and say) “Hello Mrs Defoe, what's the problem?”

‘She said “Well, we want a goal bonus”.

‘I said "What do you think we're paying £13m for? For him to miss them?!”

‘He was on £60,000 a week and she wanted a goal bonus!'

The then 25-year-old proved an instant hit at Fratton Park, netting eight goals in 12 appearances as Pompey finished eighth in the league.

However, Redknapp quit the PO4 hot seat in October 2008 – only months after guiding the Blues to FA Cup glory – to take charge at Tottenham.

And much to the ire of Pompey fans, Defoe would make the same move when the January transfer window opened in 2009.

In total, he scored 17 goals in 36 Blues appearances.