What Liam Fox had to say about Dundee United job, 'things aligning for him' and his network

Liam Fox believes the opportunity to become manager of Dundee United has come along “at the right time”.

Liam Fox addresses the media during his first press conference as permanent Dundee United manager.
Liam Fox addresses the media during his first press conference as permanent Dundee United manager.

The 38-year-old was named as Jack Ross’s successor last week following three games as interim boss.

Fox chose to retire from playing in 2015 to make a head-start in his coaching journey, and he feels the various roles he has held since then can stand him in good stead for taking charge of a club of Dundee United’s stature.

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“I feel now is the right time to become a manager,” he said as he faced the media on Tuesday for the first time since his appointment on a two-year contract.

“I feel like I’ve done a decent apprenticeship to get to this point so that gives me confidence. I’ve worked with some very good people and I’ve learned a lot from those people.

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“Sometimes things just align for you and this has just come at the right time for me.

“I finished playing early to get the opportunity to hopefully be ahead of the game in relation to people of a similar age who had been playing.

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“In any job in football, there are ups and downs and there have been some real highs and some lows for me, but you always learn the most about yourself in the low periods and I think that was evident for me.

“I’ve worked with a lot of good people in different roles and that gives me confidence that at this point I’m ready to lead this football club.”

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Fox’s only previous stint as a manager came when, aged just 32, he took charge of Cowdenbeath in the 2016-17 season. After nine months in the hot seat, the former Livingston midfielder left the Fife club as they languished at the bottom of League Two in March 2017.

“I’ve learned a lot since Cowdenbeath,” Fox said. “That job was very early in my coaching career and it taught me how difficult the job is.

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“It taught me about resilience and it showed me areas I needed to go away and work on, and I’ve spent the last period doing that, working for various different people in different roles.

“It was a brilliant opportunity for me and it has definitely sped up my learning process to be able to sit here today.”

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Fox, who will be assisted by Stevie Crawford, has a big network of people he can call on for advice but he is adamant he will do things his way.

“There are people I can pick up the phone to if I need advice but I need to make the decisions for myself and find my way,” he said. “There’s no point in me trying to be somebody else.

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“Sometimes the more people that give you advice, the more clouded your judgment becomes. It’s about me being myself.”