Andre Villas-Boas may have left but his project of creating a revolution at Chelsea will live on
Andre Villas-Boas slept at Chelsea’s training ground in Cobham, Surrey, last Saturday night following the away defeat to West Bromwich Albion.
It wasn’t unusual for him to do so, particularly the night after a loss. He was restless and distraught and did not want to expose his family to his feelings.
It became an all too regular occurrence to see Villas-Boas’s black BMW X4 in the club’s car park overnight as he wrestled with how to turn the club’s fortunes around — and then to see him working in his office before dawn.
Villas-Boas knew he was running out of time but although the decision to sack him was made within minutes of the match ending at the Hawthorns last weekend, Roman Abramovich agonised until the early hours of Sunday morning about whether he should give the young Portuguese, whom he admired and liked, one more game.
Abramovich had been agonising for weeks, ever since he turned up unannounced at the training ground to observe the manager at work and gauge the mood in the camp. Chelsea went on to throw away a three-goal lead against Manchester United and lose miserably to Everton on Feb 11. Abramovich changed his mind that evening. He decided that maybe, as some in his so-called ‘golden circle’ had been arguing since the international break in early September, Villas-Boas could not carry on.