Buzzing on Yahoo Sports:

Dirty Tackle

Andre Villas-Boas airs grievances with Daily Mail journalists and Alan Sugar during press conference

Dirty Tackle

The holiday season is upon us, so Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas decided to use his press conference after his side's 2-2 draw with Manchester United on Sunday as a way to conduct the traditional Festivus "airing of grievances."

Villas-Boas was questioned about how he "wanted more respect" (about 1:50 into the video above) after widespread speculation that his job was in danger following Spurs' 6-0 loss to Man City last week. He then reiterated that he feels he's being disrespected, saying "A couple of people insult my integrity and human values, my professionalism. One of those people is sitting over here and he insults the success that I have achieved in other clubs and I don't think it's fair. I think it's a lack of respect and an attack on the person's integrity."

Despite Villas-Boas saying "one of those people is sitting over here" and motioning towards Daily Mail journalist Neil Ashton, another reporter asked if gabby former Spurs manager Harry Redknapp, who was not present, fell into the category of people insulting him. Villas-Boas then states that he doesn't have a problem with Harry Redknapp.

Villas-Boas then implied that personal attacks are being made against him and not the new managers of Man City and Man United, who have also struggled to find their footing at times this season. That's when Ashton himself decided to chime in and ask what was personal about his Nov. 24 article with the headline "Villas-Boas faces a fight to keep his job as Spurs boss with mounting pressure from the boardroom and players after £107m spending spree" and his Nov. 25 column entitled "Any of us could have had AVB's success at Porto - but he was out of his depth at Chelsea and he is the wrong man for Spurs."

Villas-Boas said, "I think yours and Martin's [Samuel, who condemned AVB as having a habit of passing blame on Nov. 26] articles were completely out of order. That is my opinion." He also added that both Ashton and Samuel misrepresented his statement after the loss to City. "I never told that the players should feel ashamed of themselves. We, that includes me." Ashton did not understand this, but by that time Tottenham's head of media urged them both to move on.

Ashton, a devoted supporter of another London club (Crystal Palace), followed the press conference up with not one, but two articles on Villas-Boas' "stunning attack." (Fun fact: Ashton once admitted in an interview that when he was 17 years old, he wrote a vindictive complaint letter to his now colleague at the Daily Mail, Jeff Powell, because he didn't like Powell's opinion of his favorite club).

Villas-Boas did not limit his ire to Neil Ashton and Martin Samuel, though. He also had a few words for former Spurs owner and current Twitter blowhard Alan Sugar, who has also been critical of the Portuguese manager (and once called his association with the club "a waste of 10 years of my life"). Said AVB:

"I think it's a very driven agenda by somebody that doesn't honour the club, neither myself nor my players. It's their team, their passion and they don't trade it for anything else, not like Alan Sugar who trades it for money."

Like Ashton with the definition of the word "we," Sugar had a hard time understanding this.

He then engaged in infantile banter with other Twitter users who back the manager that led Spurs to their highest ever point total in the Premier League last season.

Villas-Boas has been a divisive figure since arriving in England, but this calm rebuttal to his critics is likely to win him a few more supporters. The only question that matters, though, is whether his players are counted among them.

Video via 101gg

- - - - - - -

Brooks Peck is the editor of Dirty Tackle on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him or follow on Twitter!

Sign up for Yahoo Fantasy Soccer
View Comments (3)