Q&A with former Rangers Striker Marco Negri
Interview conducted by Ashley Calver
Follow Ash on twitter - https://twitter.com/AshleyCalver1
How did you first get involved in football, your first club was Cosenza but were you anywhere before that?
I grow up with the passion for football playing with my friends all the time and everywhere, garden, beach street…then my first club was in a small village where I used to live and after 2 years, when I grow up physically and technically I had a trial with Udinese (Serie A), a famous Italian club, very famous in taking care of youth development. So Udinese was my first professional club at 13 years old. After I made all the steps from lower league to make the debut at 17 years old in Serie B with the first team and we won the title.
A big money move to rangers with Walter Smith in charge, did you know much about the club before signing and did you take much persuading when you knew they were interested in you?
I knew that Rangers were a massive club because in the previous year Juventus played against them several times in the Champions League but to be fair I understood the importance and the glory of the club and of course the passion of the most amazing supporters of the world once I arrived and once I wore the ‘Gers top. Before signing for the club I had several opportunities to sign for Italian clubs because with Perugia I had a great season in Serie A scoring 15 goals without penalties. The chance to play at Ibrox and in the Champions League made the difference and it took just 2 days in Glasgow, smelling the atmosphere to understand that Rangers was my big shot of my life.
You were often noted for your quite calm celebrations after scoring, was there any reason for this?
I am ALWAYS remembered for my quite calm celebration after my 5 goals against Dundee United……but behind that scenario there was a reason explained very well in my book with all the details. I got plenty of pics of me smiling with my team mates especially hugging my friend Gazza after my goals. I never set a celebration before a goal, I just left my emotions be free to come out but believe me, inside after any goals I have always been full of excitement and adrenaline.
I understand you are doing some coaching schools on behalf of Rangers currently, what does that involve?
Next week I will be in Darwin the first week and then Tiwi Islands for the second of Rangers Soccer Camps. Thanks to Andrew Power that contacted me last year and to Rangers Soccer School who organized everything to host me. In Darwin it will be a normal 5 days soccer camp, in Tiwi Islands we will coach for the first time to the Aboriginal kids. To be on a pitch with the kids and coaching them has been always a pleasure ( I am part of CIC champion coach staff and we do soccer camps all over the world. The CIC is of Costacurta Ambrosini Oddo and Cannavaro), and doing it for Ranger and in a Rangers top is a dream coming true.
When you finished playing was the plan to always be a coach, or did you make other plans initially?
When I finished my career, my son was just born so I decided to be a DAD 24 hours and for 7 days….I really enjoyed it! The passion for football has always been there in my heart and in the last 3 seasons I was involved with CiC in several camps. I also got a special project regarding specific training sessions for strikers. To develop the ability of strikers and I truly hope to be part of it in the future as professional staff.
In April 2015, Your autobiography was released. Had it been in your mind for a while to do a book or just an opportunity that come up and you liked the idea of it?
Never thought about writing an autobiography I just liked the idea of a Scottish journalist that considered my Rangers career the most enigmatic in the Scottish Championship, with an amazing high and a big low due to the most bizarre injury in UK football.
What about your future plans, more coaching schools with Rangers or are you looking to get into full-time coaching with a club?
Like I said before, I wish to start to get involved in football with my project and at the same time to teach my passion and my skill to young players especially for Rangers.
Are their people in and out of the game that have been a great influence on you?
I was focused on my football career since I was young, I did make many sacrifices. Than I was very lucky to become a professional football player and to dress in the glorious Rangers top, the highest point in my career and for this I have to say thanks to my family, especially my father, a great influence for me and massive support to end. Through the notorious moments and the bad periods, especially during all the injuries.
And finally is there one piece of advice you would give to youngsters looking to get into football?
I have always been over the moon with a ball on my feet with the chance to play with my best friends, so forget money and celebrity and focus on ENJOYING every second while you are playing the best game in the world.
Marco’s book is available on Amazon Kindle editionAmazon Kindle edition, iTunes, in WH Smith or Waterstones.
Also available, signed copies, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org his co-writer.