At The End Of The Day

But does it re­mind Welling­ton Phoenix as­sis­tant coach CHRIS GREENACRE to wear the right jersey?

Australian Four Four Two - - CONTENTS - Chris Greenacre

I knew I’d made it as a player in the lat­ter stages of my ca­reer. The game can be taken away from you quickly and if you al­low your­self to rest on your lau­rels, it could bite you on the back side. I never let my­self get car­ried away with any­thing. I went about it with a day-by-day men­tal­ity and if you do that, you can ac­tu­ally look back and say ‘I did make it and I was for­tu­nate enough to make a liv­ing out of foot­ball’. I was hap­pi­est when we were win­ning some­thing. We had one pro­mo­tion in my ca­reer at Mans­field Town. We got pro­moted in 2001/02 to League One . I was the top goal scorer, we fin­ished third and won 24 games. My hero grow­ing up was Alan Shearer. The way he used to hold the ball up and bring other play­ers into play was some­thing my game seemed to re­sem­ble. I tried to model my­self on him and he has the most goals of all time in the Pre­mier League de­spite en­dur­ing two se­ri­ous in­juries in his ca­reer. The fun­ni­est thing was when I was on the bench for Manch­ester City and we played Brad­ford City in the FA Cup at home. I was com­ing on with min­utes to go and on the touch­line, I had my shorts on and I went to take my jacket off and I still had my warm-up shirt on. My jersey was still hang­ing up in the dress­ing room! The gaffer, Frank Clark, was in mid-con­ver­sa­tion with the fourthy and I’ve lit­er­ally sprinted back in to the rooms. You can imag­ine the man­ager was like ‘where’s he go­ing?’. Peo­ple who’ve played at Maine Road will re­mem­ber how long the tun­nel was and it took me a solid 40 sec­onds to get up there and back. I even­tu­ally got on, we won and I got kick up the back­side post-match. The day foot­ball broke my heart was when I got re­leased by Manch­ester City. Joe Royle came in and the club was go­ing through a huge tran­si­tion pe­riod. I im­me­di­ately went out on loan with Black­pool which was prob­a­bly a bad move for me. I’m not sure if the coach there ac­tu­ally wanted me, so you can imag­ine turn­ing up to train­ing, the coach doesn’t re­ally know you’re there and I ended up only play­ing four games. When I got back to City, Joe de­cided he didn’t want me at the club any­more and I had three years left on my con­tract. To be fair, the play­ers Joe signed did a very good job. My proud­est mo­ment was when I scored 21 goals for Mans­field Town in 2002 and I just missed out on the Golden Boot. We had a crack­ing team that sea­son and even had a few play­ers that went onto play in the Pre­mier League. If I could change one thing I would pun­ish de­fend­ers for tugging on strik­ers. I’ve heard a lot of crit­i­cism on the VAR, but what I’ve liked about it is that when there’s a de­fender tugging on a striker, they get pun­ished for it. If it wasn’t for foot­ball I prob­a­bly would’ve gone down the phys­io­ther­apy route just to stay in sport. Three words that sum me up Hon­est, hard-work­ing and happy.

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