Former Republic of Ireland striker David Connolly and current Cobh Ramblers boss Shane Keegan joined John Duggan and Johnny Ward on Football Saturday to go through the latest news and views from the world of football, honing in on the fact that players are becoming less keen to enter management after their career.
Former Republic of Ireland striker David Connolly explained the variety of factors that ensure ex players proceed with caution before entering football management to the Football Saturday panel today, taking a look at the low number of those who have gone on to do so from the 2002 Republic of Ireland World Cup squad.
Not doing so however he says “leaves you with an empty feeling.”
“It’s hard to explain. You feel like it’s just not enough but then with the same token, when is it going to be enough [not to be coaching]" Connolly says.
"Maybe you're worried about failing...the lack of control to make it a success.
I think it’s something that when you finish playing and you’ve got that inclination to do it you’ll always struggle with it.”
There are however outside factors that also play a part in the decision process.
“There’s away from the family, football 24/7, the cut and thrust of a first team environment, the pressure…it’s hard to put your finger on it” Connolly continues.
“Maybe you’re worried about failing because when you’re a player no matter what you say it’s in your own hands. If I go to bed, eat well, train well I’m in control of 80%, 90% of my future.
As a manager you probably lose an awful lot of that and maybe that’s a determining factor where a lot of lads go, that lack of control in making it a success, am I willing to pay the price?”
Discussing how it’s not becoming increasingly less common that top level players are wishing to go down the management pathway in the twilight years of their career, Connolly goes on to say that there’s a “fine line” for when they should go about getting the necessary qualifications.
“I’m completely against doing your coaching badges while you’re in the middle of your career, you should be 100&% focused on your career” he says.
“You shouldn’t be coaching kids when you could be doing something to make yourself better as a player. You get one career, focus on that and get another year on it…why finish at 35 when you could finish at 38, that’d be my philosophy.
You could do the badges but do them in the summer when you’ve got nothing else to do.
You don’t want to be one of those lads who gives up playing because you think eh, maybe I’d be a better coach. No!”
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