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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 19, 2011

Villas-Boas: Win was for Sir Bobby

Sir Bobby Robson, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho were among a long list of people Andre Villas-Boas credited for his success after his Porto team beat Braga to lift the Europa League.

• Brewin: Not-so-vintage Porto triumph
• Falcao hails Porto unity
• Europa League Gallery Photo Gallery

Villas-Boas became the youngest manager ever to win a UEFA club competition when his team ran out 1-0 winners thanks to Falcao's 44th-minute header in Dublin's Aviva Stadium.

Robson gave Villas-Boas his first break in football when he helped arrange some coaching courses for the then 16-year-old after he impressed the Englishman with his passion for the game in the '90s

Villas-Boas went on to forge a career in scouting with Mourinho at Porto, Chelsea and Inter Milan before taking the helm at the Estadio do Dragao, where he has lifted a remarkable three trophies in his first year in charge.

Robson died two years ago after a long battle with cancer, and Villas-Boas had no doubt he would not be where he is today without the help of the former England manager.

"I dedicate this win to my technical staff, the players of Porto and the supporters. But I'd like to pay a complement to Pep Guardiola, which might come as a surprise, and to Jose Mourinho,'' Villas-Boas said.

"He (Mourinho) introduced me to professional football, and I'd like to dedicate this to him. And to someone who has already left us, but was decisive in my career: Sir Bobby Robson. I never had the opportunity to say farewell to him. I'd like to dedicate this to him and his wife, Elsie, and thank him for everything he's done for me.

"Bobby allowed a 16-year-old to approach him and talk about football tactics with him. Then he took me to training, watching training sessions. He had that respect for a young boy who had just approached him in an apartment block in Porto.''

Villas-Boas has now won the Portuguese Super Cup, the league and the Europa League, with a fourth trophy a distinct possibility when his side line up against Vitoria Guimaraes in Sunday's cup final.

His progress has not gone unnoticed. Chelsea, Juventus and Roma have all been linked with moves to appoint the Portuguese as their manager next season. The 33-year-old is committed to taking Porto to greater things though before moving on, starting with next year's Champions League.

"My release clause is very, very high,'' Villas-Boas said when asked if he would now be the subject of firm interest from other clubs. "It's something that's not normal. That reflects the power of Porto's brand, and I'm very proud of that. This is my club, my home town and I'm proud to be here. My ambitions are not important.''

Villas-Boas, who has become the talk of European football after his imperious season with Porto aged just 33, said although he was pleased to have won, the final hadn't been a true representation of Portuguese football.

"The most important thing is that Porto could add one more trophy to their achievements," Villas-Boas said. "I'm only sad because we could have played better. It wasn't a good show after all. Both teams were not calm. It was not representative of Portuguese foootball. Did we only have one shot at goal? It was the decisive one. We are very happy to won this trophy."

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