PSG eye Villas-Boas as new head coach
Paris St-Germain want Andre Villas-Boas to become their new head coach and are prepared to pay the £10m it would take to buy him out of his contract at Tottenham Hotspur.
Villas-Boas is on holiday and PSG are yet to make formal contact with Spurs or the Portuguese's representatives but they want the 35-year-old to succeed Carlo Ancelotti.
Ancelotti, like Villas-Boas a former Chelsea manager, is expected to succeed Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid and has made Tottenham's Gareth Bale his main transfer target.
Real also considered making a move for Villas-Boas – as did Napoli before they decided against meeting the buy-out clause and instead opted to hire Rafael Benitez. Villas-Boas has restored his reputation in the Premier League after guiding Spurs to fifth place. Although they missed out on Champions League qualification Spurs achieved a record points total, 72.
Even though he was sacked by Chelsea, after a difficult few months in charge, Villas-Boas' reputation remained high throughout Europe and Real even considered approaching him last summer when it appeared Jose Mourinho would leave.
Mourinho's return to Chelsea, plus strong indications that Manchester City, Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool, will all spend significantly has led to concerns that Spurs might struggle to break into that top four without strengthening.
The impending arrival of Franco Baldini as the club's new director of football is a positive step. The former England general manager left his post at Roma last week and is currently in London for talks with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy over his role.
Villas-Boas had pushed for Baldini's appointment last summer but accepted Levy's position that he wanted to give it a year to see whether the new head coach worked out before changing the structure.
Baldini is regarded as one of the most accomplished directors of football in Europe and his appointment, along with the opening of a new training ground last year and plans for a new stadium, is a progressive move.
However, there are more immediate concerns about the strength of Spurs' squad, as Villas-Boas has already publicly stated.
The first XI is regarded as competitive but there is a lack of depth on the bench, particularly in terms of attacking players.
Villas-Boas was disappointed that a number of deals fell through last year, having hoped to sign Joao Moutinho, Oscar and Leandro Daimao.
The Portuguese is happy at Spurs and appreciates the opportunity he was given, but nevertheless wants to feel that the club are being more decisive in the transfer market, not least to show Bale they are ambitious.
Spurs are adamant that Bale is not for sale at any price this summer and Villas-Boas is desperate for the 23-year-old to remain. The head coach is also keen to challenge for trophies next season.
Villas-Boas has two more years left on his contract and is not agitating to leave. However, according to sources in France and Portugal, PSG are extremely interested in hiring him having missed out on Mourinho and – for now – Arsene Wenger.
French is among the languages spoken by Villas-Boas, while PSG's financial muscle and the desire of the club's Qatari's owners to mount a serious challenge to win the Champions League would be tempting for any coach. (© Daily Telegraph, London)