Last season at that point in the year when we had begun to look for a new manager, AVB was a popular candidate amongst Chelsea fans. Hailed as the new José (simply because he did well at Porto and was Portuguese) he promised to bring with him similar success and that was always going to excite the Chelsea faithful. After all you don’t have to talk to one of us lot for very long to hear the Special one’s name mentioned.
So the expectation was always going to be high for AVB, what with the media having dubbed him the new “special one” and the amount Chelsea had paid to get him here, he had to hit the ground running. After 12 games he had appeared to do so, winning nine, drawing two and losing only one. However, it is since then that our form has been inconsistent and people have begun to question his managerial prowess. We may not be able to see what he does during the week with the squad (although we are assured he is working on a “master plan”) but based on the decisions he has made during games he doesn’t fill me, or the rest of the stadium it seems, with 100% confidence. Of course, every football fan thinks they can do a better job but I don’t think I’ve ever witnessed the majority of us in the stadium all wanting the same tactical changes on such a regular basis. Maybe we just know this team a lot better than the new manager that walks through the door every one and a half seasons or so. After all, the team hasn’t changed dramatically over several years and we’ve seen a few different footballing philosophies tested in that time, maybe we do know what works best and when. Whatever the case, the majority of the Chelsea fans and media alike have started to let him know they think he is not doing his job well at the moment.
So, do we sack him or do we back him? If we sack him what will we do next? Hiddink has just been snapped up and I personally don’t think Capello would be on the top of our list. As for the real “special one” I don’t think he would want to come back anytime soon. If we back him we may well struggle to get Champions League football this season and perhaps next season but I would happily sacrifice that for a young, vibrant team that eventually gels. We as supporters seem to want everything now, we shouldn’t be so short-sighted and instead think about the long-term plan. After all, we’re not going anywhere, are we? So then why not give AVB the benefit of the doubt for the time being.
Changing managers every one or two seasons will never allow us to create a unique playing style and philosophy and it is never going to allow us to integrate our youth. Why? because managers will always be under pressure to get results now instead of building a team for later, and possibly greater, success. And long-term success is surely what we all want.