Tottenham Hotspur: New Jose Mourinho assistant Joao Sacramento 'breathes football'

Joao Sacramento
Joao Sacramento worked for three years at Monaco under fellow Portuguese Leandro Jardim before moving to Lille in 2017

Jose Mourinho's new assistant Joao Sacramento learned his trade at university in Wales.

And the man Sacramento calls his football father, Football Association of Wales Trust technical director David Adams, believes his former student can thrive alongside Tottenham Hotspur's new manager.

Former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United boss Mourinho is back in football following the sacking of Mauricio Pochettino.

But he will not be flanked by long-time assistant Rui Faria, with 30-year-old Sacramento leaving French club Lille to fill that role at Spurs.

"Joao is very meticulous, determined and motivated. He lives and breathes football," Adams tells BBC Sport Wales.

"You have to make a lot of sacrifices and he has done that - football is his entire life.

"He will spend his whole life analysing and observing football. He is that type of individual. I am sure that will work well with Mourinho."

Adams taught Sacramento during his days at the University of Glamorgan - now the University of South Wales - where he did a degree in football coaching and performance and then a Masters.

"He wanted to study football but there was no specific qualification in Portugal at degree level," Adams explains.

"He had ambitions to be a coach but his parents didn't want him to come. He is a very bright, intelligent lad. I got talking to him on an open day and his parents eventually allowed him to come."

Sacramento began doing some coaching in Cardiff City's academy while still an undergraduate.

Next, through the university's links to the Football Association of Wales, he did analysis work for then Wales manager Gary Speed before landing a role as head of opposition analysis at Monaco.

Sacramento moved to Lille in 2017 and was assistant coach there until Mourinho came calling.

"I think the link with Mourinho is that he uses a methodology called tactical periodisation," says Adams.

David Adams
David Adams worked alongside Alan Curtis during his brief spell in charge of Swansea City in 2015-16 before a spell at Middlesbrough under Garry Monk

"It is basically about integrating physical training with technical and tactical work. Rui Faria worked with him on that.

"Joao knows that methodology - he did a lot of research into that area when he was in Wales - and I think that's why he has been appointed at Tottenham."

Former principal lecturer Adams has had spells coaching at Swansea City and Middlesbrough and was named FAW Trust technical director - the post previously held by Osian Roberts - in October.

He remains in regular contact with Sacramento, who spent time in Swansea during Adams' stint at the Liberty Stadium.

"It's great to see Joao moving to Tottenham because it's very difficult having not played at the highest level to get a job at the highest level," Adams says.

"It's a nice story - to see that if you study and have that level of ambition, you can get to the top."

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