FOR the first time in half a century I wasn’t directly involved in football when the season kicked off — and it’s not the nicest feeling in the world. 

Harry Redknapp: 6 months of hell – now I’m raring to go

I haven’t been in this position probably since the age of 15 when I left school and it’s not something I would want to get used to.

But I must say the past six months have been incredibly stressful for various reasons and I must say leaving Tottenham really came out of the blue.

The one thing I can do is walk away with my head held high at the job I did there because I think it’s safe to say everyone sees them as regular Champions League challengers these days.

On the plus side, maybe I did need a little rest from things so now I have the chance to recharge my batteries.

Give it a couple of months and I’ll see what comes up, but I must say I am still as enthusiastic as ever, and I’m sure things will be happening.

In the meantime I will watching my local team Bournemouth and popping down there to take in a few games.

I’ve been to see them a few times in pre-season, and it’s a great little set-up, a really well-run club, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see them go well in League One this season.

Paul Groves and Shaun Brooks have got things going there and I’d love to see them in the mix for promotion.

As for me, I’m sure I will pop up again before too long. I’ve not finished with football yet, so watch this space.

A LOT of people have told me it will take a few years before Liverpool are back challenging at the top of the table on a regular basis. I disagree entirely.

It would be more of a surprise to me if they WEREN’T in the thick of it for a Champions League place come the end of the season. I know there are plenty who insist it’s a work in progress, and of course Brendan Rodgers will want to stamp his own ideas on things.

The two main signings Rodgers has made — Fabio Borini and Joe Allen — will only make them stronger. I can see them making a real good go of it.

Liverpool are the only change I can see from last season’s top six as it will be a real tough job for Alan Pardew to repeat last year’s heroics at Newcastle.

I’ve already said Arsenal will do well to finish in the top four, although I do like Santi Cazorla, one of their new signings from Malaga. I tried to get him.

Gunners fans are in for a treat watching him — although there might not be much else for them to cheer over the months.