Is Andre Villas-Boas Cracking Under The Pressure?by Jack Kitson / 29 February 2012, 10:18
Under-fire Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas has for the first time spoken of the uncertainty surrounding his future at Stamford Bridge. The 34-year-old has been engulfed in a whirlwind of immense pressure these last few months and in an interview with a Portuguese radio station he gave the clearest indication yet that he could soon be on his way out. AVB, who had said previously that he had the full backing of the club’s hierarchy, has now backtracked and admitted that he is unsure how long he will be in the job.
Poor results, player unrest and tactical criticisms have contrived against the Portuguese coach and he remains the firm favourite in the Next Premier League Manager To Be Sacked betting market. Carlo Ancelotti was infamously sacked after failing to win Chelsea a trophy last season, despite winning the league and cup double during the 2009/10 campaign. AVB is currently the seventh manager to work under the trigger happy owner Roman Abramovich and if results down improve then he could soon become the fifth manager to be given the boot.
Chelsea’s comprehensive 3-0 win at home to struggling Bolton last weekend eased the pressure ever so slightly as it ended a poor run of five matches without a win. However, The Blues find themselves outside of the top four following Arsenal’s stunning comeback against Tottenham, meaning anything other than a win away to West Brom on Saturday will instantly pile the pressure back on AVB. Chelsea will then try to claw their way past Birmingham in their FA Cup fifth round replay next Tuesday in what will be a pivotal match for AVB as the competition is realistically their only chance of winning silverware this season. The make or break match will be the club’s second-leg Champions League clash with Napoli in mid-March. Chelsea must somehow recover from a 3-1 first-leg defeat in what could ultimately be AVB’s final match in charge.
Reports have emerged that former boss Jose Mourinho is planning to purchase a flat in London which will inevitably fuel speculation linking him with a return to Chelsea. The Next Chelsea Manager market shows that Rafa Benitez is the next in line for the job, with the likes of Fabio Capello, Mourinho and Pep Guardiola also in the mix.