Zenit Saint Petersburg coach Andre Villas-Boas has refuted rumours linking him to the manegerial job at Barcelona and has called the notion “completely groundless”
The ex-Spurs manager took over at the Russian Premier League side in March after getting sacked by the Premier League club in December last year.
Villas-Boas has started off strongly at his new club, as Zenit presently lead the Russian league table and have won all five league matches under the Portuguese.
Perhaps the strong and admirable performances of the club have only caused the speculation that Villas-Boas could be out of Russia next season. Barcelona has been reported as as a potential destination for the former Porto and Chelsea boss as a below par season for the Catalan club has put present coach Gerardo Martino’s future in doubt.
The past few days have especially been tough for the La Liga giants who have become a club synonymous with the words ‘Champions’. The Camp Nou side suffered elimination in the quarter finals at the hands of fellow Spanish clubAtletico Madrid in the Champions League. They then shockingly lost to Granada in the league, and to top the rough outings off, they were defeated by arch-nemesis Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey final. While some are believing Messi’s dip in form to be the reason of Barcelona’s fall, some have called Martino’s coaching to be the reason the Spanish side be without silverware, at the end of the season.
But Villas-Boas insists that he has no intention of leaving Zenit.
“All the rumours about my negotiations with Barcelona are completely groundless,” he said
“I’ve signed the contract with Zenit and I’m set to stay here until its expiry date.
“My work with Zenit is my top priority.”
Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has also said that no decision on Martino’s future will be made until the end of the season when talks will be held.
“We have a lot of respect for Martino, we still have five games left in the league and it is our responsibility to be competitive and keep up the pressure on the leaders.
“A few days after that, I’ll be speaking personally to Tata Martino about other things.”
While Villas-Boas has refuted a possible change in clubs because of his satisfaction with Zenit, it is unlikely that he will refuse to coach a side like Barcelona (if offered). However, the Portuguese’s record at clubs which receive a lot of media attention (Chelsea and Spurs) has not been too good. Taking over Barcelona, especially after its relatively under-par present season, will surely invite a lot of attention and more presurre Therefore, perhaps the 36 year old would want to take another season at Zenit and lead his side to glory in Russia and then consider a switch in allegiance, to whichever offer still stands.