AVB laughs off "pressure" claims

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Andre Villas-Boas has laughed off suggestions his job is under pressure following a Chelsea’s poor run of form, insisting his job would be safe even if Chelsea crashed out of the Champions League and were left behind in the title race.

Chelsea have lost three of their last four encounters in recent weeks, suffered two defeats against Liverpool in ten days and were dealt a blow in the Champions League last month when a 2-1 defeat against Bayer Leverkusen left them in danger of not qualifying for the knockout phase of the Champions League for the first time in their history, leading to increased speculation Villas-Boas could be ousted from the hot seat at Stamford Bridge.

Owner Roman Abramovich has garnered a reputation of removing under-performing managers almost immediately if they look unlikely to satisfy his desire to win the Champions League in particular, but Villas-Boas remains adamant that even if he does fail to win silverware this season he will not be sacked by the Russian.

When asked if his job would be in trouble if Chelsea lost their crucial European tie against Valencia and Manchester City he replied: “Sure, sure, because I was brought in for a three-year project and we believe in it."

He added: I've spoken enough about the Valencia game. It's life or death for any of the clubs in the competitions and both clubs are used to going on to the last 16. End of story. We have to wait for that game.”

"Regarding the fixture against City, they have been very, very competent when they play the top teams with excellent results - excellent result at Liverpool, excellent result against Arsenal in the Carling Cup, excellent result against Man United.

"So you'll expect them to be in top form to try to kill off the chances against Chelsea but we'll have to wait and see."

The former Porto boss has also been criticised for his footballing philosophy since taking over at Stamford Bridge as the blues continue to struggle defensively having already shipped more goals than they did in Jose Mourinho’s first season at the club in 2004/05, with the 34-year-old saying his approach is “not a cancer”.

"The players are not struggling with it (the philosophy) at all.” He said. “The philosophy is not a cancer - we are not speaking about something that is wrong.”

"We're speaking just about something that we like to do and we do it with pride, which is good football.”

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