Darren Fletcher is back at Manchester United in a coaching role as he embarks on the next stage in his career.
Fletcher won five Premier League titles, the Champions League, Club World Cup, FA Cup and League Cup during a 12-year career with United.
Now retired from playing, the 36-year-old has been helping to coach United’s under-16s part-time as he works towards completing his coaching badges.
He is following in the footsteps of other former United greats, with Patrice Evra having spent time at the club recently, while current Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer started his coaching career as reserve-team manager.
Fletcher left United for West Brom in 2015, then joined Stoke in 2017 before hanging up his boots earlier this year.
He has been working as a pundit, and says he is ready to start coaching after having the summer to reflect on his playing career.
“I think I needed that period to step away a little bit and took my time to come away and accept not being a player any more, moving onto my coaching badges, and this is the early stages of doing it,” Fletcher told United’s official website.
“I’m just getting my coaching badges done and being invited back into the club. I’ve got a bit of spare time in the evenings and I thought there’s nothing better than doing something at United and giving a bit back, working at the Academy.
“It’s a club that means a lot to me, so it ticks both boxes really. It allows me to get my coaching badges done and give a bit back to the Academy kids.”
Fletcher, who made more than 300 appearances for United between 2003 and 2015, has found it rewarding passing on his huge experience to the club’s next generation.
“Do you know what? I’ve really enjoyed it,” said the former midfielder, who earned 80 caps for Scotland.
“I started a few weeks before lockdown, and got a taste of it, but have been back involved for two or three weeks. I’m just loving it, the enthusiasm and the stage they’re at in their career.
“It’s a great place to be, in the evenings, I’m giving up my time and can see how much it means to them.
“I pass on some advice and small details on the game and they really try to take it on board and add it to their game. To see them doing it, and getting rewards from it, means a lot.”
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