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The Jim Magilton Interview - Part Three
Saturday, 4th Apr 2020 09:40

Part three of TWTD’s extensive interview with Jim Magilton covers his transformation from player to manager following Joe Royle’s departure and his opening season as boss.

“I was doing my coaching badges with the Irish Football Association and I was adamant that I wanted to go into that line,” Magilton said thinking back to the summer of 2006.

“We were packing up, we were leaving, I had had a fantastic and incredible playing career at Ipswich where I enjoyed every second of it. I didn’t enjoy sitting in the stand watching us getting relegated, that was the worst of it, that was lowest point.

“But building relationships with players and staff was incredible and building relationships behind the scenes with the chairman and the chief exec.

“When Joe left it was a shock, an absolute shock. I didn’t feel there were any hints coming from Joe. Joe was disappointed massively because he had huge pride in building squads that were competitive and should have won and should have been promoted, and I thought he like all of us just taking stock - OK, what do we do next? What’s happening? Where are we taking this? What’s the position of the club?

“So when he left it was huge. I wanted to go through an interview process, I didn’t think it was going to lead to anything at that stage. I was determined to be a manager or a coach, that season I’d turned down the opportunity to go and be the player-coach at Oxford United, it just didn’t fit and I didn’t want to go and Joe agreed.

“So I didn’t go but I felt that the next stage of my football life would be going into management or into coaching, but I needed the background, I needed the opportunity, I’d never interviewed for a job.

“I candidly off the record said to the chairman and the chief exec, ‘Could you put me through an interview process? What does it look like, what does it entail? Tell me what I’m looking for’.

“So they invited me to the chairman’s house and he and [chief executive] Derek [Bowden] came out and I think they were drinking cocktails and they had Panama hats on and shorts and there was me in a jacket with a briefcase and I’m going ‘What’s going on lads?’.

“I kind of went, ‘I want you to take me seriously here, so please take me seriously’. And when I went away I was thinking ‘I’m not going to get another chance at this’, but then I had a phone call saying ‘OK, here’s [what we’re going to do]’.

“So I went in prepared. I had Powerpoint presentations and a 20-year knowledge of the best coaches. I used to take down notes from every coach, every manager I’ve ever played with. Every session that I liked, so I had a bank of sessions and even references, even managers’ references, how they dealt with certain situations. I noted everything down, I’ve still got the notebooks. I must have 50 journals.

“And I spoke to other coaches and other managers and other players to give me little touches here and there. So I was fully prepared - nine points, here’s how I’m going to deliver. Here’s how I see the club moving forward.

Photo: Action Images

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