• Premier League

Villas-Boas denies Spurs job under threat

ESPN staff
November 28, 2013
AVB says he has the backing of the board © PA Photos

Andre Villas-Boas has played down a meeting with the Tottenham board, and said he is "indifferent" to the speculation surrounding his future.

Villas-Boas's job is reported to be under threat following a run of three Premier League games without a goal which culminated in Sunday's 6-0 thrashing at Manchester City.

Speculation is mounting, with the Daily Mail reporting that Spurs' director of football Franco Baldini is lining up former Barcelona star Luis Enrique, who is currently in charge of La Liga strugglers Celta Vigo. Baldini and Enrique worked together at Roma in 2011-12, where they led the Serie A side to sixth place.

Despite recruiting an array of attacking players in a bid to replace Gareth Bale - sold to Real Madrid for a world-record £86 million last summer - Spurs have scored just nine times in the Premier League so far this season. Their previously impressive defensive record was decimated by the defeat at Eastlands, and they sit ninth in the table ahead of the Manchester United's visit to White Hart Lane on Sunday.

Villas-Boas denied there was a rift growing between him and his players ahead of Thursday's Europa League trip to Norwegian side Tromso, and that he still retains the full backing of the club's hierarchy.

"A 6-0 defeat is a massive defeat," he said. "I have the confidence of the board. I have the confidence of my players and I have to move on to do a proper job.

"It was a conversation. They are of the same opinion that everything went wrong and we hope to get some response in the future. Results like this normally happen to big teams once every 10 or 20 years."

Villas-Boas endured a short but torrid time in his last job at Chelsea, lasting just nine months at Stamford Bridge before he was sacked and replaced by Roberto Di Matteo. The Portuguese said he has learned from that experience and is now able to ignore the conjecture about his future.

"I am immune right now," he said. "I used to read a lot into situations like this, into pressure points when I was at Chelsea. But not anymore. I am very indifferent.

"I was not treated properly by people and I got various opinion-makers and column writers that wrote so many lies. The amount of things I received was completely unfair and untrue. It comes with a high-profile job, I suppose. The only quarter I come under pressure from [now] is the press."

Tottenham are already through to the knockout phase of the Europa League, meaning Villas-Boas should be able to rest several key players ahead of the clash with United, against whom Spurs took four points last season.

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