Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Villas-Boas relishing Blues reunion

Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas believes meeting Chelsea will be a 'special encounter'

Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas believes he grew as a coach during his ill-fated nine month spell as Chelsea boss.

The two London clubs meet at White Hart Lane on Saturday with Villas-Boas set to face his former employers for the first time since he was sacked in March, and the 35-year-old is looking forward to seeing some familiar faces

"I'm going to see people who mean a lot to me, people who are part of my development as a coach," he said. "I certainly feel I have become a better coach because of them."

He added: "They have helped me a lot on my development of career. People who gave everything for me, obviously it is special to encounter any team you have played or belonged in the past."

Villas-Boas was in charge of Chelsea when John Terry was accused of racially abusing QPR defender Anton Ferdinand last October.

The Blues skipper will miss the Spurs fixture after accepting his fine and ban which were handed out after he was found guilty by an Independent Football Association panel but Villas-Boas, who supported Terry at the time, maintains he was correct to do so.

"This is a long story full of events," he said. "So many different interpretations. So many governing bodies intervening. I made my stance towards my reading of the situation. But what I did in the past I continue to support."

Current Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo worked under Villas-Boas at Stamford Bridge before replacing the Portuguese when he was sacked.

Di Matteo led the club to FA Cup success and their first ever European Cup but Villas-Boas reckons remaining unbeaten for a season, like Arsenal did in 2003/04 and his own Porto side did two years ago, is a harder task.

"Winning any league is extremely difficult but going through it unbeaten is also extremely difficult," he said. "The achievement that Arsenal did was remarkable and outstanding and probably won't be repeated in the modern game as it happened in Porto with me. Which is more difficult? Remaining unbeaten in the league."

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