Former Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas has quit Chinese club Shanghai SIPG and intends to take a break from football.
Villas-Boas had been linked with a return to the Premier League as Everton’s new manager but has made it clear he does not intend to work in England again.
The 40 year-old refused to discuss his future after his side lost to city rivals Shanghai Shenhua in the Chinese FA Cup Final last Sunday, which was settled over two legs.
Villas-Boas was offered a one-year contract extension but it is understood he has turned it down and intends to leave China, where he replaced Sven-Goran Eriksson as the coach of Shanghai SIPG last November. He made former Chelsea midfielder Oscar one of his marquee signings.
Villas-Boas said after the final game: “It is not the right time to talk about whether I’m staying or leaving. SIPG knows my decision, so will you. But this is not the best time to talk about it.”
Villas-Boas had previously been coach of Russian club Zenit St-Petersburg who he joined four months after being sacked by Spurs in December 2013. The Portuguese spent two-and-a-half years working in England, after he arrived at Chelsea who poached him from Porto, where he had just won the Europa League, after triggering a €15 million release clause.
He lasted less than a year at Stamford Bridge and while he did better at Spurs, it ultimately ended in frustration for him. Villas-Boas vowed he did not want to work in England again.
Although he did not hold talks with Everton it is believed he was sounded out recently, once it was clear his fellow Portuguese Marco Silva – with whom he shares an agent – would not be released by Watford.
However, Villas-Boas, who had previously worked with Everton’s director of football, Steve Walsh, at Chelsea, when Walsh was a scout, did not want to consider a return. It is understood Villas-Boas will now take an extended break from football. Interestingly, he has always been clear that he does not intend to be a manager for long and spoke of retiring from that role when he was in his 40s.
Villas-Boas has a passion for cars and motorbikes and when he was at Chelsea he spoke of wanting to take part in the Dakar Rally one day. Reports in Portugal have even claimed he has signed up for next year’s version of the off-road endurance race.
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