In the last few days Barry Ferguson has been linked with a return to the Ibrox in a coaching capacity.Some Rangers fans do not seem too happy after his record as a manager at Clyde. This seems highly unfair, that failure can hinder one’s coaching career. It is of course true that often you learn from your mistakes.
I remember when Willie Miller took up the manager role as manager at Aberdeen after his playing career had ended. It never went as well as he would have liked but I am sure even he learned from it and took those experiences into his future roles. But there is some who may feel his cult hero status is slightly diminished . I am not one. .
The same is true of Frank Sauzee who as a Hibs legend stepped in to the vacant managers position at a time of need, but unfortunately was found wanting at a managerial level. There is a real danger for former players to coach or manage at their former clubs that they may not have the same success as they did in their playing career. At the moment Richie Foran is have a tough battle to ensure Inverness survive in the SPFL Premiership. He like many former players managing at clubs which they were cult heroes at do get more goodwill and time from fans than others would normally. And as we know time is not something that managers normally get.
But Barry Ferguson return to Ibrox should not be affected by his performance at Clyde as he would be returning as a coach rather than a manager. He is bound to have learned from his experiences at Clyde. It is clear when you listen to Barry Ferguson on the radio that he has developed in his knowledge. But we should not forget that coaching part-time players is difficult especially if you have never been a part time player yourself. He will have learned a lot from that experince. Finally as fans we should certainly have more understanding of the management role and ensure that former players are always helped in high regard. Coaching and playing are different careers and we should recognise that, being a great player will not guarantee that you are a great manager and vice versa. But their achievement ssould be acknowledged on merit.