SINGAPORE — It is probably one of the most stressful jobs in the world to be the manager of an English Premier League (EPL) club.
Just six matchdays into the new season, and already two managers have been sacked: Bournemouth's Scott Parker and Chelsea's Thomas Tuchel. It is an unforgiving, impatient environment which wears out even the most talented tacticians in professional football.
Yet, it is also a job coveted by many up-and-coming coaches, and one of them is former West Ham, Tottenham and Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick.
"When you're in it, it feels differently. You have that belief in yourself that you can achieve what you want to do in coaching," he said during a chat with Yahoo News Singapore's "Footballing Weekly" show on Thursday (1 September).
"I've had a similar kind of pressure during my playing career, so it's all about facing the challenge and wanting to make the players under your charge better."
So would he been keen to take the plunge into the EPL managerial hot seat, given that he was once a caretaker manager for Man United?
"I've enjoyed coaching, but I did enjoy the management role more. It's difficult to make a plan in football, but if something comes along, then yes, for sure I'll consider it," he said.
"I'm definitely not chasing it, and I'm not desperate for a job right now. But at some point, it'll be good to have a go."
'Don't be afraid to work hard'
Carrick was in Singapore as guest-of-honour for a youth seven-a-side tournament by the JSSL football academy.
Regarded as one of the finest midfielders of his generation, the 41-year-old Englishman followed a successful playing career that included 34 international caps by diving headlong into coaching at Man United.
When Ole Gunnar Solskjaer left his United managerial post in November last year, Carrick assumed the caretaker manager role for three matches - and came away with a respectable record of two wins (against Villarreal and Arsenal) and a draw (against Chelsea).
During his Singapore stay, he took part in a coaching seminar where he offered his opinions on how to get the best out of youth footballers. What would be his advice to budding players?
"It all boils down to enjoying your football, and to do that, you have to be passionate about it. And if you're really enjoying your football, you'll end up putting more effort into it," he said.
"And really, don't be ashamed to work hard. It's such a simple thing, but people find it hard to work hard year in, year out. But if you can keep on doing that, you'll get where you want to be."
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