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Lampard: Villas-Boas lucky to get Spurs role

Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard says his former manager Andre Villas-Boas is lucky to have landed the Tottenham Hotspur job.

Villas-Boas was appointed Harry Redknapp’s successor at White Hart Lane on Tuesday, signing a three-year deal five months after his sacking from Chelsea.

Lampard, who fell out with the Portuguese coach during his brief tenure at Stamford Bridge, says Villas-Boas has a tough act to follow in north London.

“AVB (Villas-Boas) has inherited an exceptional squad of players,” he told The Sun.

“A squad that’s good enough to bring Champions League football and contend for the Premier League title. A team that’s played some terrific, thrilling attacking football and scored goals for fun.

“So AVB is a lucky man taking over at Spurs because the players are so very good. Admittedly that can be a double-edged sword, though.

“Because Harry Redknapp will be an extremely tough act to follow. Harry lifted Spurs to an amazing level.

“The way he turned that club around was remarkable. They were at absolute rock bottom when Harry came in.

“Then all of a sudden they’re playing in the Champions League and competing at the very top. So he did an incredible job there and he definitely didn’t deserve to lose his job.

“That’s why I was really surprised when Harry left. He did wonders at Tottenham and I thought him leaving was a terrible shame.”

The 33-year-old also expressed his belief that Villas-Boas will have improved as a manager by learning from his disastrous spell at Chelsea.

Lampard went on to say his terse relationship with Villas-Boas was just part of the reason for the former Porto man’s lack of success in west London.

“AVB didn’t do well at Chelsea but it was not for the want of anyone trying,” he said.

“He wanted to succeed, he wanted to do it his way. But it just didn’t work. Not because of any battle between me and him, there was a lot more to it than that.

“He had his plans for the team and that meant me not playing as much as before. That was just one part of it, the problems were far bigger and broader than that.

“But as a player you learn off every manager whether they are good, bad or indifferent. I definitely learned in different ways from Andre. It was an interesting time.”

Sun 8 July, 2012
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