It’s been a while since Carlos Carvalhal has left the United Kingdom, but his experiences in foreign football continue to be a frequent subject in Portugal.

The manager, who’s been announced as the new boss of Rio Ave this week, attended to the International Congress of Tactical Periodisation, and shared some of his experiences in the Championship and in the Premier League.

Speaking of his time at Sheffield Wednesday, Carvalhal has claimed that they tried to play a ‘different’ kind of football in the Championship. For that to happen, they’ve made unusual signings, including a ‘dwarf’, who ended up helping their campaign.

“We didn’t go to Sheffield with the idea of playing typical English football”, said Carlos Carvalhal (via Mais Futebol). “We found the club at the right time to build and sign. We were looking for talented players that no one wanted”.

“Bannan is one of the best midfielders in the Championship. He was a dwarf, and no one cared about him. We watched videos of him and after ten minutes we decided to go get him. Wallace was at Celtic, Hooper at Norwich, who didn’t want him. On average they were 1.77 meters tall. We gathered them all to try to play.”

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Speaking of his work philosphy in charge of Swansea City and Sheffield Wednesday, Carvalhal talked about the importance of the pre-season training, and also some tactics he used when his teams were playing too many games in a row.

“Pre-season is key. Principles have to be well defined. During the season there’s no time. João Mário worked our defensive line almost every day. In the international breaks, the players who weren’t with us returned and they forgot many things they had to do. It took ten days for them to lose the behavioral pattern.”

“Fatigue may not let you play, but your defensive organization supports that. You keep the 0-0 and maybe end up scoring. It’s not opera every day. We want to play our music, but in a ten-game cycle the conditions may be different. The art and ingenuity of coaches is that they dictate success in these limit situations.”