Wow. Having sent out 14 applications I knew it was likely I would get a few interviews but to get this many was an amazing surprise. Unfortunately, Internacional, Palermo, Valenciennes and Flamengo
ruled me out as their manager as they just weren’t interested. However, instead of worrying about nobody wanting me, I was asked to attend interviews all around the world for teams of all stature. The first up was Red Star Football Club
in the Championnat National in France. A low league and not very exciting but it was an option and I couldn’t rule it out!
I accepted and flew over from Holland that evening. The interview was scheduled for the next morning so I found a fantastic little hotel in Paris and made sure I researched the club and was rested for the first ever job interview I was about to have.
Tuesday Morning 9am
: Good morning Edwin. It’s a pleasure to finally meet you and I am very honoured you accepted this meeting. I know you are now a man in demand and we will look to make this rather quick. I just have a few questions for you to work out if you would fit in well for the club.
Edwin van der Sar
: First off, let me thank you for giving me this opportunity and I hope we can work together in the future.
: If hired, we would expect you to finish mid-table in your first season. Do you think you can do better than that?
: I think if I am given the job I may be able to get a top half finish as I believe I will be able to give the squad extra belief.
: Are there any job aspects that you would like us to judge you on?
: I would like to be allowed to develop younger players and bring them through to become first team regulars, definitely.
: Any others?
: I think that is it to be honest. With a club that is of this current size, I believe any other factors wouldn’t be fair.
: That is fair enough. Now your turn. Are there any requests that you would like us to consider if we should hire you?
: Well the training facilities at the club are well below average and I would request an upgrade to them because we will only then really be allowed to develop excellent talent.
: Unfortunately we disagree and believe the facilities are of a good enough standard. Therefore we are unwilling to grant this request.
: I’m sorry if that commitment can not be made I do not believe you will ever allow me to fulfil the club’s potential and gain promotion. You have shown no flexibility and I have no interest in filling the managerial position any longer for the club. Thank you for your time but I must leave it at that.
: Well as we are unable to improve the facilities, we have no option but to rule you out of the job. Good luck Edwin and thank you for coming in.
So my first job interview has just finished and the opportunity has gone! The fact that the club and chairman are so unwilling to make important and vital changes to the facilities show they have no real ambition. Going forward I am more aware of what I want from the club I want to start working for and hopefully this will make the process much easier.
I left the chairman’s office and drove back to my hotel. I ran through my emails and saw I had interview requests from Stockport County, AZ Alkmaar, Olhanense, Sportkring Sint-Niklaas, Rupel Boom FC, C.D. Puerta Bonita, FC Djursland and Salamanca Athletic Club S.A.D
. The obvious name to stand out is AZ Alkmaar
but I feel as though that would be too easy to get to the top but then I cant turn down any opportunity I get. The following 5 days were full of interviews and I was running around crazily all over Europe trying to prove I have the ability to these clubs. I realised quickly that I also had to be flexible in my demands and that I may have to wait some time before making any crazy requests for a club that can’t afford them or might be unwilling.