September 16, 2019 | News | No Comments
The 36-year-old is eager to move into coaching after hanging up his gloves, with there not too many others to have made that transition
Former Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho and current Wolves manager Nuno are providing inspiration for Lee Grant as the experienced goalkeeper plots a career change.
At 36 years of age, a man currently on the books at Old Trafford is approaching the end of his playing days.
He acknowledges as much and is already starting to piece together plans for when the day comes to hang up his gloves.
Grant is eager to get into coaching and buck the trend when it comes to shot-stoppers making a successful transition from a life between the sticks to that in the dugout.
“It is strange that you don’t see a huge amount of goalkeepers making it into top-level management,” Grant told United’s official website.
“Yes, Jose Mourinho played in goal and Mike Walker the old Norwich manager. The Wolves manager Nuno – he was a goalkeeper. Kevin Blackwell. There have been a few. But, obviously, the Wolves boss, Nuno, is probably a shining example of it in this day and age. A goalkeeper turned head coach. So, obviously, that’s a path I wouldn’t mind following.
“Us goalkeepers are a bit more difficult as, to be a goalkeeper coach, you have to have your goalkeeping badges as well. For me, it’s something I would want to do naturally anyway, coaching and management, and I mean the whole team, as it’s something I’ve really had my eye on.”
While expressing a desire to prolong his association with football once heading into retirement, Grant admits that he has not always sought to head down such a career path.
He added: “Strangely, in the earlier part of my career, coaching was something I was always dead against.
“I could never see myself in that role whereas, as I got to 26 or 27, my views changed on that dramatically.
“I’m completely the opposite now. It’s something I’m really looking forward to getting into and, hopefully, management at some stage. I’d really love to be part of a coaching team and, as I say, eventually lead a team. That would be the ideal scenario for me.
“I think something changed when I went back to Derby for the second time. I was working with Steve McClaren and I just saw the way he worked. I actually saw, first hand how a change in manager can have such a dramatic impact on a football club, and on a team of players. It really opened my eyes to it. So getting an opportunity to do that in the future, I’m really looking forward to that moment.
“I’ve had some excellent role models. For me, though, you learn just as much from the ones you don’t necessarily agree with, the ones you don’t see eye-to-eye with, or the ones whose methods you don’t like. You learn as much from those as you do from the ones you’ve really enjoyed working with, the ones you’ve studied and the ones you trust and believe in.
“So there is lots to learn and I am trying to pick up as much as I can. I feel like I’m in a wonderful position to do that at the football club I am at, at the moment.”
Grant is currently third-choice keeper at United behind David de Gea and Sergio Romero.
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