Andre Villas-Boas divided opinions among the fans when he took charge at Tottenham in summer. First of all, he replaced a man, Harry Redknapp, who was a popular figure among the White Hart Lane faithful. Naturally, it takes time to embrace a foreigner so dearly. Further, his reputation was bit tainted during his spells at Chelsea. He was a very successful manager at Porto and came with a lot of promise but his tenure at the Bridge was a flop.
Well, not flop in that sense but he was sacked without given sufficient time but there were other problems too which had left scars on his managerial abilities.
His situation became bit precarious when Spurs failed to win their first three league games. He was booed at White Hart Lane against Norwich and one felt the situation could go worse.
However, the Spurs camp believed in him and believed in his methods and now is reaping the benefits. He is the real architect behind Spurs’ slow but steady progress. So, what has he done really to turn the tide?
New signings: Any team losing players like Luka Modric and Rafael van der Vaart is bound to struggle initially. His problem was compounded with the fact that several key players got injured, most notably Scott Parker. New signings – Fulham duo Clint Dempsey and Moussa Dembele – settled in quickly and helped the side earn positive results.
Results: Though Spurs suffered setbacks at the hands of Chelsea, Man City and Arsenal, yet victories against Manchester United and Liverpool must have given huge boost.
Fourth place: Spurs are currently sitting in fourth place in the Barclays Premier League table. This is a huge psychological boost to any side aiming to get into Champions League spot. Despite a stuttering start, Spurs have managed to make way to top four. Now the real challenge begins –they have to hang in there.
Jermain Defoe: The 30-year-old was unsure whether he would play again for Spurs at the start of the season but after he was given a new contract, Defoe has defied all expectations. The England international has scored 14 goals in all competitions, 10 in the league, and credit must go to AVB for transforming the striker completely.
Though Villas-Boas says he is happy to work with the players he has got, especially the key players now returning from injuries, but he could still delve into the transfer market and buy one or two quality players. The future looks bright for Spurs under the safe hands of the Portuguese.