Why Andre Villas-Boas to PSG makes sense

Jonathan Johnson@@Jon_LeGossipFeatured ColumnistJune 12, 2013

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas during the Barclays Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Sunderland at White Hart Lane on May 19, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)
Ian Walton/Getty Images

The latest name to join the Paris Saint-Germain coaching merry-go-round was Tottenham Hotspur’s Andre Villas-Boas on Tuesday night according to reports in England from the Daily Mail.

No sooner had the exclusive dropped then British and also Italian journalists, such as Dominic Fifield in the Guardian, started backing up the claims and now it appears that the side from the French capital have their eyes on the Portuguese.

"Mini-Mourinho" as he is known, almost led Spurs to Champions League qualification and is thought to be the club’s best hope of keeping Welsh sensation Gareth Bale at White Hart Lane. But he also has a £10 million buyout clause that would leave the Londoners powerless to stop him from talking to PSG if met.

ESPN FC report PSG are locked in talks with Bale’s most serious suitors Real Madrid, also according to ESPN, regarding want-away coach Carlo Ancelotti’s future. The French club are becoming desperate in their search for a successor.

So far the French champions have been rebuffed by the likes of Arsene Wenger and Laurent Blanc, both according to ESPN, and now seemingly by Anzhi Makhachkala coach Guus Hiddink, who has opted to stay in Russia for another year as reported by Goal.com.

It appears that the offer of only an interim posting with PSG, as they wait for Wenger’s contract at Arsenal to expire, is putting off potential candidates for the job.

Why then does Andre Villas-Boas make sense for the three-time Ligue 1 winners?

Firstly, PSG need to escape the short-termism that is currently blighting their search for a new coach.

They have made no secret of their desire to appoint Gunners coach Wenger as their long-term leader. But the Frenchman’s insistence on at least seeing out the final year of his contract means that the club are being forced to consider a temporary replacement until next summer.

With Ancelotti pressing to leave Paris now though, the club’s ideal candidate to keep the Parc des Princes hot seat warm is sporting director Leonardo who faces a nine-month ban for pushing a referee as reported by ESPN FC.

The idea of an interim role is putting off potential applicants though.

If PSG are to snare Villas-Boas, they need to start thinking long term and move away from the idea of appointing Wenger as coach any time soon.  The timing is simply just not right for such a move for either side.

The capital club need stability and a project that will allow them to stay on top domestically while continually challenging in Europe for the next few seasons as the threat of Monaco comes to the fore in Ligue 1.

To do that successfully, PSG will need to persuade the Portuguese that he will be more than a makeshift appointment.

Villas-Boas almost led Spurs back into the Champions league and has rebuilt a reputation that was damaged by an ill-fated spell at Chelsea in record time.

His managerial stock is high once again and, if given time, could maintain PSG’s position at the summit of French football.

Secondly, and not so obviously, Villas-Boas could be an ideal interim replacement for Ancelotti by default.

Like his mentor Jose Mourinho, the 35-year-old has never stayed at any club for too long. In fact, he is yet to stay with a club for more than one season.

The French champions could lure him to Paris only to have his head turned again if successful in his first season, leaving PSG in the same position again one year down the line.

Short-termism is currently damaging the ambitious French capital outfit’s plans for the future, but Villas-Boas could arrive as a permanent fix only to leave a short time into his stay, enabling the club to still pursue Wenger if presented with the opportunity.

Of course, that could come around to bite the club if they drop their interest in the Arsenal man only for Villas-Boas to leave them one year later.

The move for both parties only makes sense if PSG undertake it with the intention of the Portuguese tactician being Ancelotti’s long-term replacement. Otherwise, it is an ill-advised switch for Villas-Boas and further humiliation for Leonardo and co. who are currently being rejected left right and centre.

Without being able to escape their short-termism, PSG will continue to be stuck at a crossroads with Ancelotti, Real Madrid and themselves all in limbo. But the longer this situation continues; it is the Italian who is losing the most.

Villas-Boas is an appointment that could work for PSG, but it has to be done with no ulterior motive and a solid plan for the next two to three seasons under steady leadership.

Without that, the coaching position in the capital will continue to be poisoned chalice for all potential applicants.