Gary Neville’s former Manchester United team-mate Nicky Butt has revealed how he once told him “he was s***” during his early days as a Sky Sports pundit.
On his Monday Night Football debut in 2011, Neville – who was new to punditry back then – stumbled on his words when trying to interview then Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini.
Neville himself found the incident embarrassing and Butt admitted he was also far from pleased by what he had seen.
"As a manager, you’ll have tough times and get crap off the press,” Butt told The Athletic.
“I know that – and I’m fine with the media. I wasn’t when I started in my first interviews – or my first managerial speeches, but you learn.
“I remember seeing Nev (Gary Neville) on Sky Sports at first and he was s***, and I told him. Now he’s the best, by a mile.
“And you have to be prepared for questions – journalists have a job to do too.
"As you get older, you have more empathy for what others do. When I was 20, I didn’t. I thought journalists were tossers, but then you grow up, learn more about football and the world. And the football world is still one I have a lot to offer."
Since retiring from professional football in 2011, Butt turned his attention to coaching and was briefly the manager of United’s U23 team.
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In 2019, Butt was promoted to head of first-team development, before he left the club in March following nine years in various coaching roles within the academy.
And Butt has said he is open to coaching across the globe and feels showing character is the key to being where you want to be.
"Yes. I’d go anywhere in the world,” Butt said.
“I’ve left Manchester before. I watch my former team-mates closely – Wayne (Rooney, the Derby County manager), Phil (Neville, the former England Women boss now in charge at Inter Miami in MLS).
“They took themselves out of their comfort zone. They show character and that gets you what you deserve."
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