Marseille coach Andre Villas-Boas handed in his resignation Tuesday because of a conflict with the club’s board over transfer decisions but insisted he will stay in charge if his offer is not accepted.
At a news conference in the southern French city, the former Chelsea and Tottenham manager said the club’s decision to hire Olivier Ntcham on loan from Celtic without letting him know prompted his move.
The mercato (transfer window) ended with the arrival of a new player, Villas-Boas said. Its a decision that is not made by me. I learned it this morning from the press when I woke up. It is a player for whom I said no.
Marseille boosted its midfield with the loan signing of Ntcham on the final day of the window on Monday. Villas-Boas added he was also informed very late of the departure on loan to Hertha Berlin of Serbian winger Nemanja Radonji.
I do not agree with the sporting policy,” said Villas-Boas, speaking on the eve of Marseille’s game at Lens. This club has already lived through two or three years of nonsense in terms of transfers.”
After he guided Marseille to second place last season and an automatic Champions League place in his first season in charge, fans hailed Villas-Boas for doing so with limited resources while praising the fighting spirit he instilled in the side.
But his team exited Europe’s top competition in the group stage this season, and Marseille has slipped to ninth place in the French league following three consecutive losses.
Villas-Boas is on a two-year contract which ends in May and had already said he would not renew it. Firing him would involve paying a considerable amount of compensation but he made clear he does not want any money from the nine-time French champions.
I don’t want anything from Marseille. I don’t want any money. I just want to leave,” he said. I don’t want to be sacked, I want to leave for sporting divergences.”
His offer to resign also came after angry supporters forced their way into the clubs training complex last weekend, hours before a French league game against Rennes. The league eventually postponed Marseilles evening match at Stade Velodrome deeming it unsafe to hold the game with tensions so high.
No new date has been set for the match. But Marseilles next home game will fall under closer scrutiny since it is against rival Paris Saint-Germain next weekend.
Villas-Boas dissociated his decision to leave from the violent incidents.
Its not the first time that a player who is not a coachs choice arrives at a club,” he said, but thats not the way I work.
More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports