Belfast Telegraph

Andre-Villas Boas confirmed as new Tottenham Hotspur manager

By Simon Peach

Andre-Villas Boas has today been confirmed as Tottenham's new head coach.

The 34-year-old's appointment marks his return to the Barclays Premier League just four months after his departure from Chelsea, where he was sacked eight months into a three-year contract.

Villas-Boas will be hoping to rebuild his reputation at Spurs after succeeding Harry Redknapp, who left the post last month after four years at the helm.

A post on the club's official Twitter account read: "The club is delighted to announce Andre Villas-Boas as head coach."

AVB's in-tray

By Paul Hirst

Five things the Portuguese must address as quickly as possible at White Hart Lane.

1) Sort out Luka Modric's future

Securing Gareth Bale's commitment to Spurs was a major coup for the club, but they have been far less successful in persuading Modric to stay. The playmaker was promised a new deal last summer after Chelsea's overtures, but he has yet to commit his future to the club. Modric was not quite at his best last season, but he is still one of the most gifted midfielders in the Barclays Premier League. Yet he became unsettled after Chelsea's advances last summer and it looks as if the Blues, and Real Madrid, are keen on signing him before the start of the season. If he wants to go, Spurs should cash in on him. A fee of £30-40million for a man who soon turns 27 represents good value.

2) Sign at least one striker

Emmanuel Adebayor may be a former Arsenal player, but the Spurs fans took to him last year and it is easy to see why. The striker scored 18 goals in 37 games and he proved to be a perfect partner for Rafael van der Vaart up front. His wages, reported to be around £175,000 a week, have been an obvious stumbling block, but if Tottenham can reach some sort of agreement with the 28-year-old then they should. If that is not possible then another hitman must be pursued. Hulk would be a perfect fit but he appears to be on his way to Chelsea. Brazil striker Leandro Damiao and Marseille's Loic Remy are possible alternatives.

3) Resolve Ledley King's future

King has become a hero in the eyes of many Tottenham fans after 14 years of loyal service to the club. His well-publicised chronic knee problems caught up with him towards the end of last season. A youth team goalkeeper clattered into the 31-year-old and King was not the same disciplined player he was in the first two thirds of the campaign. King had an operation at the end of the season in the hope he would be able to give Spurs one more year. Villas-Boas must determine whether King feels he can play at least 20 matches before he gives the out-of-contract star an extension.

4) Clear out the deadwood

Although Villas-Boas will want a big squad, there are plenty of players clogging up the wage bill who could leave. Vedran Corluka, Niko Kranjcar, Louis Saha and Ryan Nelsen have already left, but there are still plenty of others who could be discarded. Giovani Dos Santos, Heurelho Gomes, Sebastien Bassong, David Bentley and Jermaine Jenas were all out of the first-team picture under Harry Redknapp. Clearing them off the wage bill would free up plenty of money for new signings.

5) Go on a charm offensive

Villas-Boas had admirable aims at Chelsea, but in the eyes of many he went about achieving them in the wrong way. He was arguably too forthright in his bid to clear out the old guard and he therefore ostracised himself from many experienced pros at Stamford Bridge. Harry Redknapp was close to the players and his best skill was motivating them. Villas-Boas must develop a similar relationship with the players at their new base in Enfield.

Belfast Telegraph


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