Tony Mowbray has targeted a return to the Sky Bet Championship with Coventry after being appointed Steven Pressley’s successor as manager.
The former Hibernian and Celtic manager has signed a deal until the end of the season as the Sky Blues fight relegation in League One. He will take charge for the first time for the visit of Port Vale on Saturday and is already looking to the long-term.
He said: “I’m here for a bigger picture than 14 games. Hopefully next season we can get back into the Championship. At this club we have ceilings hopefully we can break through in the future. There’s a romantic in me but I understand we have to win games. I was asked having managed in the Champions League with Celtic and the Premier League with West Brom why Coventry? I see it as fabulous opportunity. We’re here to try to light that torch with the supporters and team and try to put Coventry back where it should be.”
Mowbray has been out of work since leaving Middlesbrough in 2013 following a three-year spell as manager. Earlier in his career, he had built an exciting young team at Hibs in his first job as a manager before moving on to West Brom then returning to Scotland to spend an ill-fated nine months at the helm at Celtic.
He helped guide the Baggies to the Barclays Premier League in 2008 and after over a year out felt it was time to return. He said: “It was a choice of mine, I could have been back within a week or two. I have a very young family with three boys under ten and they are a handful. I just wanted to get to know my kids having been a football manager for 11 years. We took a decision as a family to not go back to work for a year and spend time being a dad. We wanted to get Christmas out of the way and now I’m back in what I do.”
Chief executive Steve Waggott believes Mowbray can handle the expectation at Coventry and help rebuild the club.
“He knows the situation we’re in and draws comparisons between Middlesbrough and Coventry,” he said. “He gets the expectation levels.
“It’s a huge club with a huge tradition here. People use the words ‘sleeping giant’ but across the football fraternity they know the potential of the club.”