André Villas-Boas left his position as coach of French side Marseille earlier this week, and according to reports another Portuguese could be set to replace him at the Stade Velodrome.
Villas-Boas announced his resignation on Tuesday, having clashed with the Marseille board over transfers at the end of the window. The former Porto boss had suggested as recently as last week that he did not expect to remain with the club much longer, and his exit comes after 18 months in the Marseille dugout.
“I went ahead with my resignation because I do not agree with the club's sports policy,” Villas-Boas said. “I don't want anything from Marseille, I don't want money.”
The tipping point in the 43-year-old’s relationship with the sporting directors appears to have been the signing of Olivier Ntcham from Celtic, whom Villas-Boas reportedly learned had been signed through media outlets. “He is a player that I rejected, he was not on our list. I do not agree with the sports policy. This club has gone two or three years with practically no reinforcements,” added Villas-Boas.
Related article: Marseille boss Villas-Boas expecting summer departure
With the Marseille job vacant, Brazilian outlet Globoesporte claim Palmeiras manager Abel Ferreira has been contacted over the possibility of taking the position. Abel, who last weekend won the Copa Libertadores with Palmeiras, has a contract with Verdão until 2022.
Intriguingly, Villas-Boas himself has already been linked with a new job: at Palmeiras’ city rivals São Paulo. Fernando Diniz was sacked by the club this week after an incredible collapse in form, leading Villas-Boas’ name to be linked with a switch to Brazil.
Villas-Boas' salary demands are expected to be problematic in any negotiations for São Paulo, but the prospect of Abel Ferreira and André Villas-Boas swapping cities is further evidence of the high demand being placed on Portuguese coaches across the world of football.
By Sean Gillen