Tottenham manager Andre Villas Boas overlooked for Burnley job because of ‘jargon’
Burnley decided against appointing Andre Villas Boas as their manager because they were baffled by his football jargon.
AVB was inteviewed for the Clarets job after Owen Coyle left to join Bolton in January 2010. Before enjoying huge success with Porto and suffering major disappointment with Chelsea, the then Academica manager was ready to takeover at Turf Moor. Burnley were a Premier League outfit at the time.
But the young Portuguese lost out on the job after confusing the interview panel with his hi-tech presentation.
Former Burnley chief executive Paul Fletcher relates to tale in his autobiography Magical: A Life In Football.
He writes: “Mickey Walsh, an old playing colleague of mine, got in touch with me to describe Andre as being a real up and coming hot prospect.
“He sent a very detailed and lengthy application for the job. His CV and Powerpoint presentation were amazing. Even by today’s standards there was some complicated stuff in it, with some things that I didn’t understand.
“Tommy Docherty used to say he never said anything to his players his milkman wouldn’t understand. I don’t think any milkman would fathom the meaning of a lot of Andre’s presentation.
“The language and jargon of football gets worse by the day. Villas-Boas uses a lot of it. Would Burnley players have ever understood what he wanted if he’d told them to ‘solidificate’ or some of his other terms?
“It’s a fascinating thought, one of the many ‘ifs’ in football. If Andre Villas-Boas had been manager of Burnley’s Premiership team; would he have saved the season? With hindsight, we might have appointed him, but at the time it would just have been too big a risk.”
They instead opted for Brian Laws… and were relegated.