PORTUGAL

Villas-Boas: "My Porto side was practically pornographic"

"We had Hulk, Falcao, James, Otamendi... it was one of the best sides in the world," said the current Marseille boss of his Portuguese project.

Villas-Boas: "My Porto side was practically pornographic"
PAUL ELLIS AFP

André Villas-Boas has described the Porto side he led in 2010-11 to the Portuguese league and cup doublé as well as the Europa League, has spoken highly of the side assembled under him, which included Radamel Falcao, Hulk, James Rodríguez, João Moutinho and Nicolás Otamendi, describing them as “practically pornographic.”

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The current Marseille manager, who has his side five points off perennial Ligue 1 winners PSG, has also coached Chelsea, Tottenham. Zenit and Shanghai SIPG since his triumphant turn in Primeira División but holds a particular fondness for that group of players, who were in large part responsible for propelling the career of a manager inevitably labelled the next José Mourinho when he arrived at Stamford Bridge.

Villas-Boas: "The players always guessed the starting XI"

Asked in a recent press conference what his process of picking an XI for match days entailed, Villas-Boas could not resist a trip down memory lane: “At Porto, before games the players had already guessed the starting XI, because that team was practically pornographic. We had Hulk, Falcao, James, Moutinho, Otamendi. It was one of the nest teams in the world. When you see the careers they have gone on to have, it’s incredible.”

Now, however, Villas-Boas said his teams no longer pick themselves: “There are coaches that announce the team in the changing room but these days I prefer to give it earlier. I usually do it in the afternoon meeting the day before the game. Although it’s also true that my team is sometimes on social media before I’ve even announced it. That’s the first time that’s ever happened to me in France. It must be a cultural thing.”