'A wee lesson' - Jimmy Nicholl gives Steven Gerrard advice on what to avoid at Rangers
Former Rangers assistant manager Jimmy Nicholl has told Steven Gerrard that he’ll come in for more criticism at Ibrox than he has anywhere else in his career – and revealed that he would avoid newspapers and radio phone-ins discussing the Light Blues.
Gerrard took up the reins on Friday after Nicholl left Ibrox following his five-month stint at Ibrox and the Northern Irishman admitted that hearing what was being said wouldn’t make him any “happier.”
Nicholl admits he expected the “sheer intensity” that comes with being part of the Gers’ coaching staff after two stints with the Light Blues as a player previously,
“You’re going to get a lot more criticism than you are the clubs I was working at previously,” Northern Ireland assistant Nicholl said, as quoted by the Evening Times.
“I knew that; it was just the sheer intensity. Years ago I was manager and I had a club car. It didn’t have medium wave in it. I was getting slaughtered on the radio but I never heard it. It was a wee lesson to me.
“Because I never heard it, I was going into work no different. I told this to Graeme (Murty). Maybe you can’t do it, maybe you’ve got to be tuned into what the media say, what the supporters say, it’s up to you.
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“If Rangers won, I was happy. If I read the papers, listened to the radio or looked at social media, it was not going to make me any happier.”
Football Insider verdict:
This is the one aspect of the job Gerrard is, arguably, least prepared for and is something that could catch him unaware a little. The scrutiny on the Old Firm is unlike almost anything on the planet and even the most experienced players fin themselves taken aback by just how constant the attention is. Whether it is wall-to-wall newspaper coverage, social media, radio phone-ins, online discussion shows, podcasts or any of the other various methods of discussing all things Rangers and Celtic, Gerrard won’t have experienced anything like it in his past career as a player with Liverpool. The only thing that would probably come close is going to a World Cup as England captain – but even then it’s only a few weeks of pressure before everything returns to normal. In Glasgow it is 24/7, 365 days a year. It will take a toll on Gerrard but, like many before him, if he is successful he will find it is also ridiculously rewarding.