Top players must earn stripes as managers - Alan Smith

FORMER England striker Alan Smith says it would be ‘disrespectful’ to expect to be fast-tracked as a manager just because he was a top player.

John Terry, who is currently studying for his Uefa B Licence, called for top players to be allowed to do shorter courses to get their badges. "We need to make it easier for them [top players] to get into coaching roles by not doing the full length of the FA coaching course,” he said.

But Smith, 36, who won 19 England caps and is now at Notts County, argues that playing, coaching and managing are three completely different skills.

“People are managers because they’ve earned their stripes, and I’ve not done that yet because I want to keep playing," the midfielder told TGG.

“It would be disrespectful of me to say, ‘I want to be a manager, just because I’ve played at the highest level’. It doesn’t mean you’re going to be good. Not all good players are good managers, and not all bad players are bad managers.

“That’s been proven. I’d like to be a manager rather than a coach, and they’re completely different as well. Being a manager and a player are two completely different things.

“So maybe they should be taught in different ways. A manager runs a club from inside out, it’s a whole different set of skills."

Smith worked under George Graham at Leeds, Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United and Sam Allardyce at Newcastle - and picked them out as managers who oversaw all aspects of the playing side at their clubs.

“Sir Alex, George Graham and Big Sam, to a certain extent, they ran the whole club and made sure everything beneath them worked meticulously," Smith said. "They’re two totally different jobs.”

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