them first. You need to give them an ear when they need to talk to you individually. You need to tell them sometimes what they want to hear and sometimes what they don't want to hear. You've got to get the balance right there. It's easy for players to find a member of staff who they can communicate well with. They know that they're not always going to get an answer they want all the time but we have that relationship amongst the staff and players. They understand what's required when they come to see a member of staff to discuss things and what they're being told is for their benefit.
How much has football changed since you played?
The game itself has not changed. It's still about individuals, the team and results. It's about being prepared well for the games. What has changed is the way we get these things out of them and become a little bit more about the individual and collective. The individual now has far more members of staff to use to get them to the peak performance - both in terms of fitness and mentality - and being available for football matches. That has changed a lot. In my time, you were either fit or unfit. You either trained or didn't train. Nowadays, you can find you're not fit to play but you are fit to train. It's a bit of a weird one and I'm not sure how it sits with me overall. But now the process is in place to take care of players and we have to use that facility to get them out on the football field.
Mike Phelan was interviewed for MUTV's Inside Carrington programme.