World Cup winner and former France captain Marcel Desailly has expressed his desire to move into management and has not ruled out taking up a coaching role in Russia.
Since calling time on a glittering playing career, Desailly has earned his UEFA Pro License, the highest coaching certificate awarded by European football’s governing body, doing so in 2013.
On Sunday, the 47-year-old tweeted pictures of himself before the 2017 Confederations Cup final at St. Petersburg Stadium with the caption, “Coaching a national team? Yes for sure, 4 years now that I have my UEFA Pro license!!”
When asked by RT Sport if he would he consider a position in Russia, Desailly replied that coaching was the next logical step and that he would study offers.
“Oh I don’t know, I don’t know, I see myself coaching somewhere. I mean, I have the pro license… it is quite difficult to get it, and I feel like it’s now time, you know," he said.
"I’m getting to fifty years old, so it’s time now to bring my philosophy of the game that I’ve been able to build.
“Actually we talk about Russia but don’t bring me in that situation, it’s that if there is any opportunity I will study, now I’m ready for it… I’m getting to an age where I have to make the step,” he added.
Desailly was speaking to RT Sport at the official announcement of the World Cup trophy tour of Russia ahead of the FIFA 2018 Russia World Cup at Moscow’s newly-renovated Luzhniki Stadium on Thursday.
The event was also attended by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Mutko, FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura, Russia 2018 Local Organizing Committee CEO Alexey Sorokin and General Director of Coca-Cola in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus Lubo Gruich.
The tour, beginning on September 9, 2017, will be the longest of its kind and see the iconic trophy visit 24 Russian cities, including all 11 cities chosen to host tournament matches, before reaching its final destination of Moscow on June 3, 2018.
In the course of his role as a ‘FIFA Legend’, Desailly has been a frequent visitor to Russia, presenting a host of events to introduce the Confederations Cup and and will reprise this role for the 2018 World Cup.
As a player, Desailly was part of the victorious French squad at the France ‘98 World Cup on home soil. A red card marred his appearance in the final, which France went on to win 3-0, thanks to two headers from Zinedine Zidane and an Emmanuel Petit goal.
A veteran of 116 appearances for ‘Les Bleus’ in an international career that also included lifting the 2000 UEFA European Championship, Desailly believes the Russian squad have a special experience ahead of them, but should be careful not to let home pressure affect them negatively.
“Oh it’s just amazing, wow! If you see when you play at home how your heart is beating having your national shirt on you it's something very, very special, I can tell you. So now the thing is, are they capable to get this kind of pressure on their shoulders and produce,” Desailly said.
“Because sometimes when you get this sort of pressure you now cannot produce any more and you are stuck to your position so I hope this will build their motivation because the only hope that they have is that collectively all together at the same time they play at their best level to concentrate on winning something,” he added.
By Danny Armstrong, for RT Sport