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Page last updated at 20:00 GMT, Tuesday, 23 June 2009 21:00 UK

Sousa makes glittering entrance

Paulo Sousa
Paulo Sousa has signed a three-year deal with Swansea City

By David Dulin

New Swansea City manager Paulo Sousa certainly knows how to make an entrance.

His words may not have been as bold as his more illustrious Portuguese compatriot Jose Mourinho, who stepped into the Chelsea hot-seat five years ago claiming to be "the special one".

But instead he dressed to impress in a check three-piece suit with open-neck shirt and dark brown shoes - minus the socks.

If anyone was in doubt as to who the new man in town was, they soon found out.

And with it came Sousa's charm and charisma, to the extent that eclipsed his predecessor Roberto Martinez.

While some fans are still angry over Martinez's departure to Wigan, Sousa revealed the Spaniard played a part in his decision to apply for the Swans job.

Sousa spoke with Martinez after beating the Swans 1-0 back in March during his troublesome five-month reign at Queens Park Rangers - a spell he does not like to talk about.

And when Wigan came calling for Martinez earlier this month, Sousa went calling to Swansea.

"I talked to Roberto after the game against Swansea in London and he told me from the beginning that the chairman Huw Jenkins gave him a lot of support," the 38-year-old told BBC Sport Wales.

"He said the club and the people worked a lot to give him support to get success. One of the important things for a manager is the support.

"After I met Huw Jenkins last week to talk about the club - the past, the present and the future - straight away I felt involved 100%"

Sousa, capped 51 times by Portugal, is Swansea's 12th manager in 14 years.

The former midfielder, who graduated through the Benfica academy, played for some of the biggest clubs in Europe including Sporting Lisbon, Juventus, Borussia Dortmund, Inter Milan and Parma.

He was in the Juventus team that won the Champions League in 1996 before winning the trophy again the following year with Dortmund.

In his playing career, he has worked under the likes of Italian World Cup-winning coach Marcelo Lippi and highly respected German coach Ottmar Hitzfeld.

Paulo Sousa
The lack of money is not an issue. You don't buy success. The money will help to build philosophies, identities, ideas and vision

Paulo Sousa

Sousa's coaching break came on the international stage as he took charge of Portugal's Under-15 team while Brazil's World Cup-winning coach Luiz Felipe Scolari was in charge of Portugal's first team.

And in 2008, he was appointed assistant to Carlos Queiroz, who had succeeded Scolari as Portugal coach.

Sousa's first managerial job came at QPR last November but he parted company in April when the club claimed he divulged sensitive information.

The new Swans boss insists he will use the experience he picked up from working under such big-name coaches and is not afraid to call them for advice, but will not rely on them.

"These are people who in the past and in the future I can talk to and who can always help me to grow," added Sousa. "But I know what I want from me.

"The important thing is to have your own convictions and own ideas because we need to be ourselves.

"Of course I have learned from the past from these coaches. Their different kinds of cultures and different kind of styles of football have helped me to build my convictions, my ideas.

"It's always important to speak with people like them because they have a lot of history in football.

"But the most important thing is to be ourselves."

Sousa believes Swansea were "one of the best teams" for playing football last season and is keen to build on last season's eighth-place finish in the Championship.

And supporters will be pleased to hear that he expects to continue playing a flowing, passing style of football while trying to help the Swans progress, despite lacking the funds some of the club's rivals have.

"I don't have doubts that if we keep the quality, the commitment and the will in our squad, we can always stay at this level and compete with the clubs who invest a lot of money to get promotion," said the new Swans boss.

"The lack of money is not an issue. You don't buy success. The money will help to build philosophies, identities, ideas and vision.

"I think this it is going to be a difficult season. You have 10 teams looking for promotion and I want to be one of those 10 teams."



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see also
Sousa confirmed as new Swans boss
23 Jun 09 |  Swansea
Lopez signs two-year Swansea deal
20 Jul 09 |  Swansea
Sousa warned of Martinez effect
20 Jun 09 |  Swansea
Swansea line up Twente friendly
23 Jun 09 |  Swansea
Wigan finally land boss Martinez
15 Jun 09 |  Wigan
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales


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