André Villas-Boas. The Special One MK:II?

by Ben McAleer

Friday, April 29th, 2011
 

He has worked at Porto, Chelsea and Inter Milan while studying the game under the guidance of the late great Sir Bobby Robson. The same man has broken countless records with Porto and continues to prove his worth on the managerial stage. No, I am not talking about current Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho but rather his protégé and current FC Porto head coach André Villas-Boas.

At the minor age of seventeen, the current Porto boss had earned his UEFA C coaching license in Scotland and by the time he reached twenty-one, had already coached a national side, albeit, the British Virgin Islands where they lost both games under his stewardship. In 2001, he began working closely with Mourinho, serving as his assistant manager at Porto, Chelsea and Inter Milan.

Having spent eight years in the shadows of the Special One, Villas-Boas opted abandon his position on Mourinho’s coaching staff and take up the role of manager of Académica and, with the club rooted to the bottom of the table when he took over in October 2010, guided them to safety while playing attractive football in the process.

Following the departure of Jesualdo Ferreira at Porto, the club opted to appoint Villas-Boas as his replacement and, at the tender age of thirty-three, is currently the youngest manager in the Portuguese league. Having won the Portuguese Supercup at the beginning of the season, he guided Porto to league glory with five games remaining, overcoming league rivals Benfica in both fixtures while becoming the third youngest coach to win the league championship in its history.

Prior to the turn of the year, he also managed to eclipse Mourinho’s record of thirty-three matches unbeaten across all competitions having overseen Porto fail to succumb to defeat for thirty-six games thus securing his place amongst the great managers that succeeded studying the game rather than playing it.

Villas-Boas has managed to take Porto to the semi-final’s of the Europa League on top of his achievements and, following last night’s emphatic 5-1 victory over Villarreal at the Estádio do Dragão, already has one foot in the final next month. For the Porto manager to have achieved this in his first season with his boyhood club is massive achievement both him and the club.

With World Soccer crediting him with best up and coming coach in Europe, it is hardly surprising that clubs are stepping up their interest in the Porto man and while Manchester City, Liverpool and Juventus have all been credited with an interest in the tactician, club President Pinto da Costa has moved quickly to quash any talk of Villas-Boas leaving Porto. He possesses similar traits to Mourinho and, having worked under him as his assistant for eight years, has developed the same winning mentality that the current Madrid coach breeds into any team he manages.

However, many tweeters following the Portuguese believe he will remain with Porto until 2012 at the earliest. With the Portuguese side ready to mount a Champions League campaign next season, it would be difficult to dislodge him from his position as head coach especially when the opportunity to manage his boyhood club in Europe’s biggest competition is right there in front of him.

Nonetheless, it won’t be long before Villas-Boas is managing one of Europe’s finest clubs especially when he possesses the Mourinho factor about him. While he may not be better than the Special One in his current role, it won’t be long before fans are forgetting about Jose Mourinho and remembering the name André Villas-Boas.

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  • http://www.tothe92.co.uk Stuart Court

    Hi,

    Loving your blog. Very enjoyable reading. I run a football league ground guide at http://www.tothe92.co.uk . If you get a chance, take a look and leave me some feedback. Perhaps we could exchange links as well?

    Keep up the good work!

    Stuart

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