André Villas-Boas needs to eradicate player power at Chelsea

Sharethematch.com ambassador Andy Gray casts an eye over André Villas-Boas's ongoing struggles at Stamford Bridge

By Andy Gray
andre villas-boas
Chelsea host Birmingham in the FA Cup on Saturday Photo: The Sport Review

andre villas-boas

If I were André Villas-Boas at Chelsea I would be worried that the players are throwing their weight around again.

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It’s been a problem for several years and it’s worrying that yet again the players are making noises to the detriment of the manager, who’s there to run the club and ensure they are a success on the field.

A host of managers have fallen foul to the same issues currently facing Villas-Boas – and it’s not just those deemed unsuccessful.

José Mourinho didn’t last long with some of the criticism, Luiz Felipe Scolari didn’t last long, Claudio Ranieri didn’t last long – so if we go by the history books the young man could be in trouble.

Some of those big players at Chelsea still have an awful lot of power.

But somebody along the way has got to stand up and say, ‘you know what, you’ve got to make some big decisions’ and I think Villas-Boas has been trying to do that this year and he’s suffered because of it.

It depends on Roman Abramovich and whether the Chelsea owner can absorb having a poor season so that they can come back stronger next term.

But if Villas-Boas continues to let the powerful players at the club dominate, I really don’t see a way forward for Chelsea.

I don’t like to see managers go but you certainly have to question some of his decisions of late – take Gary Cahill for example.

That is the one thing I don’t understand. Cahill is a fantastic footballer, he’s experienced, he’s been playing for Bolton, he’s not rusty, he’s not been injured, and I find it staggering that he hasn’t been in the side since day one.

But only time will tell, I hope he sorts it out but there is a big job on at that football club and I just don’t know if he will be given enough time.

Another manager who you wouldn’t expect to be under pressure is Arsène Wenger.

Don’t get me wrong, Arsenal were very poor against AC Milan but I don’t think that result affects his position one little bit.

Everyone at Arsenal that makes decisions about the coaches and managers knows exactly what Wenger has brought this club – and I don’t think there will be a knee-jerk reaction.

I would be absolutely mystified if Wenger were to lose his job before the end of the season.

At the end of the season if things don’t get any better, he may well say “enough is enough and I need a new challenge”. But I don’t think he’s going to get pushed before the end of the season and I would be staggered if that was the case.

Andy Gray is an official ambassador for Sharethematch.com – Football’s Social Network. Available now for FREE online or at the App Store.

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