When people were playing football, AVB was studying – Messi, Lampard, Xavi played football, meanwhile AVB was a student of the game.                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Before the age of 21 he was already apprenticing in his career. Little wonder that he is the manager of a great club like Chelsea. What inspired him to take this course early enough? Only he can really tell us.                                                                                                                                                                                      
Don’t get me wrong, many players end up being great coaches, just look at Guardiola and Ancelloti who are excellent examples. But had they not played football, would they have decided to continue in the game as coaches? Only they know but I do not think so.                                                                                                                                                                
What amazes me, is the inspiration this young man got early on to take on the course he did. How did he feel moving around the field and not playing? He is so intelligent, so smart and tactically aware that you can perceive it even in his demeanour. In my estimation he could have turned out a World Player of the Year – I am not joking, the guy is good and calm and composed.                                                                                                                                                
I will be surprised if he does not burst Mancini and Sir Ferguson’s bubbles by winning the league for a decade. I would be surprised if he does not become the first coach to lift the Champions League back to back … of course with Chelsea.                                                                                                                                                                                                       
One reason why I became more serious about Chelsea’s prospects is that when Mourinho stepped onto the grand stage and taught lessons to those clubs that were literally monopolizing the title. He did not just win, he thought, taught, talked, and taunted – He was a mesmerizing God, and knew it.                                                                                                              
I was somewhat deflated when he left, but as fans that we are, people come and people go but we remain. We have won since he left, but have rarely been inspired by the coach’s intelligence, tactics and confidence. In the Premier League, you can only keep winning by remaining confident – Since Mourinho, left that confidence departed with him. Well until now…                                                                                                                                                                
AVB comes with that same sheer abandon, knowing full well that he has bags of tricks that cannot be exhausted in seasons. He is not bugged by our slowness in the transfer market, in fact he sets that tone and instead of playing a hip hop tune, he is playing a blues and giving us a slow dance.                                                                                                                
You see, we wanted to rock, but he wanted us to sway first and hit the rhythm. I for one was really paranoid, but I am beginning to change my paradigm by trying to understand the flow. Now I am beginning to understand why we should not rush into panic buys. We need to know the strength of the team, so we can prioritize our buys; and the formations that best suit the team. I am particularly thrilled that he is trying out the 4-2-3-1 formation.                                                                                                                                                                                    
Many people may not like the 4-2-3-1 formation, but I think that at the close of last season, if we had adopted it, we may have done better. You cannot drop Mikel because of Ramieres or Essien, they can all play. We did well under Mourinho and Hiddinks by dominating the midfield. Creativity has never been our strength – power has and to play with power you must dominate in the middle of the park.                                                                                                           
I think we are returning to those days and even better because AVB comes with creativity – Expect to see a new Lampard …. Yes, Lampard. Whenever a coach sees the potential of Lampard and wants to build a team around his style of play then that coach is bound to succeed. He has many characteristics in the field of play, because he is a genius. He reads the game well and carries the team on his shoulders and I see AVB has noticed that and he is not listening to all the rubbish ‘age talk’.                                                                                                                                 
We are lucky to have him and we should give him all the support because he studied and prepared for this challenge. He is a maestro who will undoubtedly beat Mourinho and give him credit. I respect Abramovich’s decisions, but I hope he gives AVB more room and allows him to stay forever. Roman has made Chelsea competitive over the years by making hard but right decisions.                                                                                                                                          
It is good to have one coach for the long haul just like Arsenal has, but we at Chelsea have set our priorities right – We prefer to win and keep the team alive with trophies. That is the choice we have made, we have not been have it both ways like Manchester United but maybe now is the time with ANDRE VILLAS-BOAS; the boy who went to study football when his mates were playing.                                                                                                                         
By Stan Blue



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