Northern Ireland national team boss Michael O’Neill has said that one of the players Johnny Evans has what it takes to succeed as a manager if he decided to head that path upon retirement.
The 29-year old defender has raked in 60 caps for the country.
There are talks that he would retire in a few years and move into management. O’Neill opines that if it happens, Evans would be good at it.
“Jonny’s very bright, very intelligent, he knows the game and has strong opinions on the game. Jonny certainly has all the attributes that you would look for in a manager and he’s got good qualities as a human being as well as a football coach,” O’Neill said.
“Jonny certainly has all the attributes that you would look for in a manager and he’s got good qualities as a human being as well as a football coach,” he added.
Evans has spent over a decade in senior team football. He has been coached by Sir Alex Ferguson, David Moyes, and Louis van Gaal at Old Trafford and then Roy Keane and Tony Pulis.
O’Neill said in the team there are a lot of players that have “good human qualities” that could help them transition to good managers. He adds that the real issue was if the players were ready to start work somewhere and grow. He claimed there were so many opportunities for modern day players outside of the game.
He lamented that the allure of sports punditry was stopping modern players from actually working their way up as managers. He added that life after a football career can be challenging but if retired players decide to do the work then it could be enjoyable.