Ex-England boss Hodgson eyes management return

Date published: Wednesday 7th December 2016 11:45

Former England boss Roy Hodgson has revealed that he is keen to return to management if the right opoortunity becomes available.

The 69-year-old has been out of work since resigning in the wake of England’s humiliating Euro 2016 elimination at the hands of Iceland.

But his experiences with the national team have done anything but dissuade him from looking to extend his 40-year coaching career.

“I feel fit,” he said on Sky Sports News.

“I feel that if anything I think you become a better coach – if wisdom is a word which is at all relevant in football, I would like to think it is, you do become a bit wiser with the years and you perhaps make a few less mistakes with players and dealing with players that you would have made when you were young, thought you knew it all and thought that you were invincible.

“I certainly don’t feel that I couldn’t handle the day-to-day work and the day-to-day pressures.

“I just have to wait and see what comes along. I’ve not been in any particular rush I must say. I’ve never had a long spell out of the game, it’s always been a month or two and then back in again and sometimes not even that.

“So these four or five months won’t do me any harm. But I’m hoping that something will come along that will really interest me and the people who are inviting me perhaps to join them are aware of what they’re getting and they’re getting what they want.”

Hodgson, who put his side’s shock 2-1 loss to minnows Iceland down to “fear” spreading throughout the team, backed the appointment of Gareth Southgate, the man now in charge of the national team.

“I endorse the appointment the same way as everyone else has,” said Hodgson.

“It’s great that he comes into the job with such a positive perception of him as a person, him as a coach, and his experience of the FA and what he’s cabapble of doing.

“I think the team’s very good, I think we have good players, I think they know what they’re doing. I think that they’re dangerous going forward, there’s a lot of players who are very dangerous, who can cause all opposition problems, but most important of all they are strong defensively, they get back quickly, they have the five-yard furies, they win the ball back quickly in the Barcelona manner.

“These are all things I think which make for a good football team. If Gareth, as I believe has happened so far, can keep a good atmosphere, can keep the players wanting to play for England, wanting to continue to improve, I can only see a very positive future.”

Hodgson also feels Wayne Rooney still has a role to play for England.

The captain has lost his regular place in the Manchester United team and came in for criticism after he was pictured looking worse for wear having socialised long into the night while on England duty.

But Hodgson said: “I found Wayne a good captain. He was well liked and well respected by the players. He took the job very seriously, he worked at it, he learned from Steven Gerrard, took everything that Steve had brought on board and really did work hard to be the captain that we wanted him to be. I think he succeeded well in that.

“Of course he’s lost his place in the Man United team and when players lose their place in their club team it becomes harder for the national coach to pick them. But I would like to believe he has a role to play in a squad of 22/23 players, whether he actually starts the game or not.

“They (Southgate and his coaching staff) must decide, if he is not going to start games, is he going to be content with a bit-part role and, if he’s not even going to get a large number of minutes as a substitute, is he going to be the type of guy that they want around them to help with the players.

“If it was up to me I wouldn’t have hesitated to keep him on.”

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