Chelsea will keep spending, Villas-Boas tells Wenger

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has warned Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger that the Blues will continue to splash the cash in pursuit of the Premier League title.

Wenger has accused Chelsea of “financial doping” in the past in frustration at their policy of spending vast sums on signing players, even though the money to fund the deals comes from billionaire owner Roman Abramovich rather than the club’s own income.

Chelsea paid a British record £50-million to sign Fernando Torres from Liverpool in January and Wenger believes that kind of wild spending distorts the transfer market and makes for an unfair Premier League title race.

However, Villas-Boas has already been linked with a host of big-money signings since taking charge at Stamford Bridge and says he will have no qualms about splashing out on world-class players.

“We are able to move on the market in one way and Arsenal are able to move in another way. They are able to find amazing young talents. It is almost two different cultures,” Villas-Boas said.

“It is becoming the culture that Chelsea moves in the market in one way and Arsenal moves in another. We just have to respect how people go about their business.

“For us in the end it is just to be in top spot in the Premier League when the fixtures finish. To do it one way or the other doesn’t matter.

“I respect what he does and if he doesn’t respect what we do, then there is nothing wrong with that. It is just his opinion. It is two different ways of treating the market.”

Chelsea are believed to have had a £20-million bid for midfielder Luka Modric rejected by Tottenham, while Villas-Boas has also been linked with £40-million-rated Brazil forward Neymar and his former Porto striker Falcao, who has a £25-million buy-out clause in his contract.

While Villas-Boas is certain to move in the transfer market, the 33-year-old insists there is no rush to make new signings and he plans to assess his squad first when they return for pre-season training on July 6.


“I don’t agree this team falls short of quality, most of these players have won a lot in their careers and they still have the hunger,” he said.

“I am more than happy with the actual squad. It is nothing new that when a manager comes radical changes are expected, but bearing in mind the success the squad has had in the past six years, we have to think carefully and make wise decisions. We have plenty of time to judge the market.”

Locking horns with Fergie
To enjoy a successful spell at Chelsea, Villas-Boas will have to get the better of Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson, whose 25-year reign at Old Trafford is a stark contrast to Villas-Boas’s two years of managerial experience.

Villas-Boas, who admitted his decision to join Chelsea after just a year at Porto had been against the wishes of his family, is looking forward to locking horns with Ferguson.

But he disagreed with the suggestion that the title race would be decided by his ability to out-wit reigning champions United.

“It’s not just a question of me taking on Sir Alex, it’s a top club like Chelsea challenging for the title,” he said.

“We need to be up there from the beginning and it is not one man against the other, it’s about trying to build something that can make us powerful, and help us threaten for the title as we have in the past.

“In my small past experience I managed at Academica and Porto in a very successful way and we were able to play good quality football.

“It’s not just a question of winning, it’s a question of winning with a certain amount of flair. We are people who defend to the death a philosophy that football should be an entertaining game.” — AFP

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Steve Griffiths
Guest Author
Advertising

Where is the deputy president?

David Mabuza is hard at work — it’s just not taking place in the public eye. The rumblings and discussion in the ANC are about factions in the ruling party, succession and ousting him

Zuma turns on judiciary as trial nears

Former president says pre-trial correspondence is part of another plot

High court declares Dudu Myeni delinquent

Disgraced former SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni has been declared a delinquent director by the...

SANDF inquiry clears soldiers of the death of Collins Khosa

The board of inquiry also found that it was Khosa and his brother-in-law Thabiso Muvhango who caused the altercation with the defence force members
Advertising

Press Releases

Obituary: Mohammed Tikly

His legacy will live on in the vision he shared for a brighter more socially just future, in which racism and discrimination are things of the past

Openview, now powered by two million homes

The future of free-to-air satellite TV is celebrating having two million viewers by giving away two homes worth R2-million

Road to recovery for the tourism sector: The South African perspective

The best-case scenario is that South Africa's tourism sector’s recovery will only begin in earnest towards the end of this year

What Africa can learn from Cuba in combating the Covid-19 pandemic

Africa should abandon the neoliberal path to be able to deal with Covid-19 and other health system challenges likely to emerge in future

Coexisting with Covid-19: Saving lives and the economy in India

A staggered exit from the lockdown accompanied by stepped-up testing to cover every district is necessary for India right now

Covid-19: Eased lockdown and rule of law Webinar

If you are arrested and fined in lockdown, you do get a criminal record if you pay the admission of guilt fine

Covid-19 and Frontline Workers

Who is caring for the healthcare workers? 'Working together is how we are going to get through this. It’s not just a marathon, it’s a relay'.

PPS webinar Part 2: Small business, big risk

The risks that businesses face and how they can be dealt with are something all business owners should be well acquainted with

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday