Mark Warburton drops in to Enfield Highway college for pep talk with non-league club’s academy players, writes Graham Frost
It was a return to familiar ground for former Glasgow Rangers and Nottingham Forest manager Mark Warburton when he addressed young players of Enfield Borough Football Club at the College of North East London on 25th January.
Born in Tottenham, Mark’s formative sporting years were spent in this part of North London while the most significant years of his playing career was spent as part of the highly successful Enfield team of the early 1980s.
This visit was spent in the classroom rather than the football pitch as Warburton passed on his experiences of working in both football and financial industries. Having had his playing career ended due to injury, he applied for a job as a currency trader with little idea of what the job would entail.
Buoyed by his mother’s advice to ensure that he studied both maths and English to give himself a sound footing for the future, Mark was soon embarking on trips to the Far East in order to make contacts that would prove so important to his future success.
Having made good in the world of finance, it was only when his son was attached to Watford’s football academy that Mark took the massive decision to take a 95% pay cut and studied for his coaching badges. Once qualified from a group containing many well-known footballers, he asked 43 of the top clubs in Europe if he could study with them in order to increase his knowledge and experience. Only one, Sporting Lisbon, replied, but that then opened the door to spells at other clubs including Barcelona and Ajax before taking the managerial hot seat at Brentford, Glasgow Rangers, Nottingham Forest and Queens Park Rangers.
The key points that Mark emphasised were to concentrate on your education in case you fail to realise your dreams, the necessity to work as a team and to have respect for your colleagues and to maintain your self-belief and not to be put off if you receive an initial knockback.
Following his talk there was a question and answer session involving Enfield Borough’s club ambassador and former Premier League player Michael Duberry.
Enfield Borough chairman Marvin Walker said: “We had some great feedback from our players/students about Mark Warburton’s talk, where he shared success stories from business and football.
“The inspirational session was full of great advice, leaving students feeling confident that they can achieve whatever they wanted.”