Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has backed Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard's claims that young players today are rewarded with too much too soon. The England midfielder, speaking at the end of March, believes that modern football’s lavish culture is gifting up-and-coming youngsters the rewards without the hard work being made to earn them. And the 30-year-old advocates a return to the days of younger players cleaning their team-mates’ boots to earn respect, a view shared by Lampard's former boss - and uncle - Redknapp. "I’d have them doing it now, but you’d be up before the Human Rights people," he told the Daily Mail. "It was all part of the job back then. These days, they’ve all got 4x4s and agents. The agents ring up and ask why their kid isn’t playing and they’ve never even seen them play. Doing the duties brings them down to earth. "Talk to Gazza about it. David Beckham did it, he cleaned Neil Webb’s. It’s not a hardship after training. You get a £50 tip at Christmas from the first-team player. It’s all part of the banter at the training ground. It’s about growing up as well as being a player." West Ham legend Paolo Di Canio - speaking in the May issue of FourFourTwo magazine - out now - agrees, speaking out against English football’s celebrity culture, claiming it tempts young players into caring too much about money and not enough about football. “All this money does make things difficult, especially with young players,” he says. “You earn £70,000 a week and maybe motivation becomes a problem. That’s natural. When you’re 18 or 19 there are distractions anyway, whether you’re earning that sort of money or not.” Redknapp continues: "Paolo Di Canio would get on to the kids if they were sloppy in training. Top pros would always keep the kids in their place until they developed and became somebody who could step up and join them. "That was the goal to aim for, not to walk in at 16 or 17 and get a car as good as the guys who are in the first team. "Now, kids are guaranteed four-year pro deals when they’re 14 because other clubs want them. They say they’ll give you four or five-year deals on 'X pounds a week'. Where are their goals and what are they aiming for when it’s all laid on for them?" Di Canio’s interview is part of a special England supplement accompanying the new issue of FourFourTwo, featuring exclusive interviews with the foreign stars who made their name in England – Juninho, Peter Schmeichel and Di Canio. Also in the new issue: • Interviews with Kaka, Arshavin, Terry, Motty, Stam, Dave Mackay & the Chuckle Brothers • The Top 50 Football League Players • Football’s Top 20 Hoaxes • The Best Youth Team Ever • Inside The Damned United • Swansea vs Cardiff
11 April 2009
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