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Andre Villas-Boas: A Premature Obituary.

Sunday 18th March 2012
Andre Villas-Boas : A premature obituary

Andre Villas-Boas is just 34.

An age where celebrated footballers usually retire or move to the middle east to finish their careers, the Portuguese man was appointed as the manager at Chelsea football club.

AVB's managerial appointment was an expensive affair. The London club had to shell out close to €15 million initiating his release clause from FC Porto.

Villas-Boas' career had quite the meteoric rise. In 1998 (When Zinedine Zidane had taken France home), he was appointed as the manager of the British Virgin Islands national side, at the age of 21. At this age, where most footballers make the transition from youth squads to the senior roster, Villas-Boas without having played a single game as a professional footballer, was managing the British Virgin Islands. This stint only lasted a year.

Having returned to managing after a ten year gap (in which he was assistant to José Mourinho at Inter and Chelsea) he returned to manage Académica (Portuguese Liga), who were in relegation contention at the time. Appointed during the latter half of the season, AVB steered the club 10 points clear of relegation and also to the Portuguese League Cup semi-final.

Finishing the season with Académica in the best possible manner, AVB had landed himself the boss' position at FC Porto. At FC Porto, AVB had a near perfect season. Hailing from Porto, Villas-Boas managed an unbeaten season in the domestic league won the Taça de Portugal (domestic cup) and the UEFA Europa League, making it three trophies in the 2010/11 season.

A career at Porto, which was very similar to that of former Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, the London club initiated the Portuguese's release clause, and Andre Villas-Boas found himself managing Chelsea at the start of the 2011/12 season.

Knowing Chelsea's staff history, it was obvious from the start that Roman Abramovic had only one intention of bringing AVB to London.

Immediate results.

Personally, I am completely against the idea of 'immediate results'. Managing a club is akin to taking care of a potted plant, making sure it grows the way you want, looking after it day by day.

Prior to being relieved of his job, AVB did fall into the bad-books of not only the Russian owner, but the club fans.

His decisions to bench Frank 'The Tank' Lampard during crucial games and instead play new signing Raul Meireles ahead of him cost him fan points. His defence of David Luiz against pundits Gary Neville and Alan Hansen made him look arrogant in the eyes of the British media. His side lining of Nicolas Anelka and Alex (eventually leading to the departure of both in the January transfer window) was blow up by the media, along with stories of a rift between players and management at The Bridge.

Agreed, Andre Villas-Boas did not have the ideal start at Chelsea after what seemed a fairytale season with Porto, but shades of arrogance and Roman Abramovic's impatience is what cost him the job.

Though honestly, I feel his sacking was a bit harsh.
Adwait Patil

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