As it goes from bad to worse for Tim Sherwood, things are looking up for the man he replaced as Tottenham head-coach.
Andre Villas-Boas is set to be appointed Zenit St Petersburg boss next week, sources close to the Russian club told Rsport.ru.
AVB was sacked by Spurs in December after an unimaginative and staid start to the season; the final straw was the 5-0 defeat against Liverpool at White Hart Lane, our third humiliating hammering in five months.
The Portuguese is remembered fondly by some supporters, however, after leading us to a record Premier League points tally last season and, as Sherwood lurches from one disaster to another, many fans are beginning to look back on AVB’s reign with increasing nostalgia.
The 36-year-old will replace Luciano Spalletti, who was sacked earlier this week after Zenit’s 4-2 Champions League defeat to Borussia Dortmund, and the Italian could be candidate for the Spurs job in the summer.
Villas-Boas’ first match as Zenit boss will be the return leg at the Westfalenstadion (good luck) but we shouldn’t feel too sorry for him – he’ll almost certainly be managing in the Champions League next season and receiving a hefty pay-packet to boot.
The former Porto boss will be reunited with Brazilian striker Hulk at Zenit.
If true, it’s an interesting move for Villas-Boas but a sensible one. At Porto, AVB excelled with a big fish in a small pond and was also able to succeed in Europe as well as domestically.
After struggling at Chelsea and Spurs, the young head-coach can rebuild his reputation in a country where domestic football is not in the spotlight and if he can impress in next season’s Champions League and continue Zenit’s all-conquering domestic form, his reputation could soar to pre-Premier League days.
That said, Western coaches rarely last long in Russia (Spalletti’s five years was the exception, rather than the rule) so if AVB struggles to get to grips with the job, it could be another short-lived assignment for the not-so-special-one.
Image via @GoalUK.