‘George would be fine by me’ – Klug backs Burley’s application

George Burley and Terry Butcher worked together at Scotland - Burley as the manager, Butcher as his

George Burley and Terry Butcher worked together at Scotland - Burley as the manager, Butcher as his assistant. Picture: PA SPORT - Credit: PA

Ipswich Town caretaker boss Bryan Klug says he’d support the club bringing George Burley back as manager following the latter’s formal application for the role.

Ipswich Town caretaker manager Bryan Klug (centre), flanked by assistants Gerard Nash and Chris Hogg

Ipswich Town caretaker manager Bryan Klug (centre), flanked by assistants Gerard Nash and Chris Hogg. Photo: Steven Gardiner

Burley – who was in charge at Portman Road for a rollercoaster nine-year spell between 1994 and 2002 – has thrown his hat in the ring to replace Mick McCarthy in the hot-seat, with fellow Blues legend Terry Butcher lined up as his assistant.

MORE: ‘I have all the credentials’ – Burly applies for Town job

Klug was a team-mate of Burley’s during the halcyon days of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s and the worked as academy manager when Burley blooded the likes of Kieron Dyer, Titus Bramble and Richard Wright in the ‘90s.

“I didn’t know that (he’s applied), but I worked with George for a long time and that doesn’t surprise me,” said Klug, speaking ahead of Sunday’s season-finale against Middlesbrough at Portman Road (12.30pm ko).

“George would be fine by me. He knows the club. When I was academy manager he brought through plenty into the first team and his record at Southampton continued in that vein.

MORE: Shrewsbury boss Hurst says Town link is a ‘compliment’

“It’s not for me to comment on that, but George lives in Ipswich now and I see him regularly. Who knows? It’s down to the owner.”

Klug continued: “There are lots of names being bandied about – it does my head in actually.

Most Read

“And why shouldn’t they because it’s a fantastic job and a fantastic football club so there are going to be lots of applications.

“There is a lot to work with here. If you combine the good senior players we have with our emerging talent, along with the definite plan which the owner has seemed to say to me, and if you can back yourself, and you have the coaching skills, then why wouldn’t you want the job?”

Asked if he was enjoying his caretaker role, Klug laughed: “I’m not sure ‘enjoyment’ is the right word! When I was asked to do it there was no doubt that it was the right thing to do. I knew there would be areas that wouldn’t be particularly comfortable for me. I’ve been in the game 40 years and know what my strengths are.

MORE: Lampard says he’s ‘ready for management’

“I think the club needed to reflect and change a few things though and hopefully we’ve started to do that.”

Revealing that Evans has phone him after all three of his games in charge thus far, Klug added: “We’ve had discussions (about the new manager), but I think Marcus has got his own ideas and a direction he wants the club to go in mind. That’s fine by me.

“The task was to see us through these four games. There will still be a lot of planning to do for next season and I’ll do whatever Marcus asks me to do heading into the summer. Whenever the new manager arrives we want everything to be in place as much as it can be.

“There is a lot of organisation to be done, so it won’t be straight off to the beach. There will be a few more days work.”

Keen to praise his assistants Gerard Nash and Chris Hogg, he added: “All I can say is the two lads who have coached alongside me have really impressed everybody – both the players, myself. They’ve got great futures in the game. I think the club are lucky to have them and hopefully we can involve them in ways that challenge them and keep them improving.

MORE: East Anglian bragging rights up for grabs on ‘78 Day’

“I knew that my role was just for a few weeks, but they are capable of staying at this club for a long time to come.

“I’ve seen them come through as players, I’ve seen them developing as coaches and they’ve really surprised me with the way they have stepped up.

“If you speak to any of the players they will tell you that they’ve done all the work and it’s nothing to do with me! As I say, I think they’ve got a lot to offer.”