The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Craig Chis­nall

MICHAEL JACK­SON has had quite a bap­tism of fire in his first foray into man­age­ment, but, just like in his play­ing ca­reer, the Shrews­bury care­taker isn’t go­ing to shirk any chal­lenge.

The for­mer Pre­ston and Black­pool cen­tre-back took the tem­po­rary reins from Shrews leg­end Gra­ham Turner last month and is des­per­ate to land the job on a full-time ba­sis.

He’s got one game left of the ini­tial three – sub­se­quently ex­tended to five – matches he was given by chair­man Roland Wy­cher­ley to stake his claim for the job per­ma­nently.


Ac­cord­ing to striker Tom Eaves, the Shrews play­ers want Jack­son to be made their per­ma­nent boss but what­ever hap­pens in the com­ing weeks he be­lieves he will crack man­age­ment – with or with­out the Shrews.

“I’ve ab­so­lutely loved the re­spon­si­bil­ity of putting my stamp on the place,” said the 40-year-old, who was Turner’s first-team coach.

“Hav­ing done all my badges and com­pleted the UEFA Pro Li­cence 18 months ago I wanted to be a man­ager when I was 40. If it hadn’t come here I was plan­ning to have a good look to­wards the end of the sea­son and in the sum­mer.

“It’s been ab­so­lutely manic, 100 miles per hour stuff at times. The big­gest change is the phone – it has hardly stopped ring­ing at all times of the day.

“That’s why be­ing on the train­ing pitch and game time is the most en­joy­able.”

It’s been hard on his wife Chloe and chil­dren Dy­lan, 9, Sam, 8 and Har­vey, 3, who have had to cary on with­out him.

“I’ve hardly seen my wife and kids but they all un­der­stand what this means to me and how driven I am to suc­ceed,” added Jack­son.

“If it’s not to be at Shrews­bury then so be it but I will know I’ve given it ev­ery­thing and will use this ex­pe­ri­ence to make sure it goes well in the fu­ture.

“Hav­ing been a cap­tain, se­nior player and then first-team coach this has kicked me on again in my ca­reer and given me even more mo­ti­va­tion to be the best man­ager I can be.”

In his play­ing days Jack­son was one of the most re­li­able de­fend­ers around in the Foot­ball League, work­ing un­der David Moyes at North End be­fore watch­ing Turner closely at the Shrews.

He has also called on for­mer Brad­ford and Wi­gan boss Chris Hutch­ings as a tem­po­rary as­sis­tant in re­cent weeks but has vowed to fol­low his own in­stincts in life in the hot­seat.

“I was very for­tu­nate to work with some very good man­agers in my ca­reer – from David at Pre­ston to the likes of Stan Ter­nent at Bury and then Gra­ham here,” added Jack­son.


“I’ve learned things from all of them and that’s helped in re­cent weeks but I’ve al­ways been my own man and I al­ways will be. I be­lieve I’m good at what I do, it’s just up to me to prove it where I get the chance.

“I be­lieve I’ve had a re­sponse from the play­ers. We’ve been a lot more pos­i­tive in our ap­proach on and off the pitch and we just need a re­sult or two to go for us now.

“If we can get one or two wins I be­lieve plenty more will fol­low in the next cou­ple of months and we will be OK in the league ta­ble.

“The chair­man has backed me since I took the job so I’d love to re­pay that faith and hope­fully we will all go for­ward to­gether in the long term.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Im­ages

CON­FI­DENT: Stand-in boss Michael Jack­son says his side just need a re­sult or two to go their way

BACK­ING: Tom Eaves

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