If you build a school you can help change lives.
Are you looking forward to your new role as Reserves boss, and what sort of manager are you – are you a hard task master?
I believe that you have to be because what was good enough for me when I was 18 or 19 isn’t good enough for them nowadays. I’ve learned so much about what I should have done when I was that age subsequently. I think you need to push them a bit, but the boys want to be pushed as well. It’s not a doddle being a professional footballer, so I think they’ll have to shed their fair share of sweat. I’m really looking forward to it. It’s a great challenge.
Have you worked with the Reserves before?
I did a few sessions last year and some with the youth team. I asked Choccy (Brian McClair) sometimes if I could have the Reserves to work with, to challenge myself because when you’re doing coaching courses, you don’t want to go in cold. I’ve enjoyed that and now they’re my responsibility, so that’s a better challenge as well.
Have you had advice from anyone?
I’ve spoken to Choccy, and Rene [Meulensteen] has been my mentor for years now. I’ve learned a lot from him on how to run teams and how to coach. We talk while we’re at Carrington and on the phone even during holidays. We have similar views on football and philosophy, which is nice.
You have three pre-season friendlies, then a Lancashire Senior Cup final against Liverpool to look forward to – is that pressure?
I have much to look forward to. Obviously a final is a big game for any young player, but when it’s against Liverpool it’s more special. But getting the team to the final is Choccy’s achievement so maybe he should take over for that game. I’ll ask him what he wants to do. The Reserves did well in the cups last year. They know now that every game against these teams is a shop window for them, either for the Gaffer to see or for other managers maybe to have them on loan. They’re just at a great stage in their careers and I’m really looking forward to working with them all.
Tickets for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s testimonial against Espanyol on Saturday 2 August are now available on general sale. Prices start at £20, with 50% concessions available to