Andre Villas-Boas admits he turned down chance to leave Tottenham during the summer to stay with the club he says are 'on the verge of something big' - Premier League - Football - The Independent

Andre Villas-Boas admits he turned down chance to leave Tottenham during the summer to stay with the club he says are 'on the verge of something big'

Portuguese manager will start his second season with the same club for the first time in his career and believes that Spurs are in a stronger position than ever before

Andre Villas-Boas has revealed he twice turned down the chance to leave Tottenham this summer, one of which is believed to have been Paris Saint-Germain, due to his belief that the north London club are on the verge of something big.

Spurs begin their Premier League campaign on Sunday against Crystal Palace, with Villas-Boas beginning a second season in charge with the same club for the first time in his career.

Having endured a successful year with Porto following an eight-month spell with Academica, Villas-Boas was appointed as Carlo Ancelotti’s replacement at Chelsea, but his reign at Stamford Bridge lasted just 256 days before he was sacked by owner Roman Abramovich.

But he was given a second chance in London after he was offered the Tottenham job, going on to secure fifth place last season after just missing out on fourth on the final day of last season.

The 35-year-old has now admitted that he had the chance to leave White Hart Lane during the summer, with PSG, Barcelona and Real Madrid all looking for new managers and believed to be considering the Portuguese manager.

The appointment of Franco Baldini as technical director at Spurs has led Villas-Boas to believe they can now sign players they haven’t been able to previously, and he is confident of a successful run at the top four this season.

"(I turned the offers down) because this is my first opportunity to start a second year in the same club," Villas-Boas said at the official Premier League launch at a south London school.

"I think that can give me an advantage and it is something I want to try.

"I have been very welcomed, I have an excellent group of players and the conditions and structures we have at Tottenham are fantastic and the arrival of Franco takes us to another level so these are things I had to measure.

"I have great respect for the club and for (chairman) Daniel (Levy) and these are the reasons the couple of clubs that came knocking I told them that I wasn't interested."

On the face of things, Spurs have had an extremely successful summer in the transfer window, although that could change should Gareth Bale depart for Real before the September 2 deadline comes around.

However, they have already broken their club transfer fee twice this summer, with the acquisitions of Brazilian midfielder Paulinho and Spanish striker Roberto Soldado, while Beligian winger Nacer Chadli and French midfielder Etienne Capoue have also been added to the squad.

Villas-Boas has had to endure some criticism though for not signing any English players, as well as letting ones already at the club depart, with the sales of Steven Caulker to Cardiff and Tom Huddlestone to Hull looking to be followed by the exit of Scott Parker.

Promising defender Steven Caulker left Spurs for Cardiff Promising defender Steven Caulker left Spurs for Cardiff  

 

Huddlestone made his criticisms of Villas-Boas public by claiming he is replacing the young English talent with established foreign players, but Villas-Boas has explained his decision to avoid bringing in home-grown players into his squad.

"There is one problem with English players in the English Premier League - the price," Villas-Boas said.

"They are rated for the top players. I think players in England cost you a lot more than what you can get out of Europe particularly in the case of Nacer Chadli and Etienne Capoue so at the moment it is a market we have been looking at with players that we have been following.

"The other two (Paulinho and Soldado, who cost £17million and £26million respectively) are renowned internationals that we had to pay a very high price for but I think it is the right price for players of that level.

"Eventually if a good deal at the right price for an English player arises I wouldn't have any problem with that."

All four of Spurs’ new signings have been included in the squad to face Palace this weekend and are in line to make their competitive debuts for the club.

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