Tommy Wright says he will not stray far from his tried and trusted formula for success in the Scottish Premiership after making his return to management at Kilmarnock.Wright, who by his own admission enjoyed his time away from the game, has been brought in to revive Kilmarnock’s season and lift the club, who sit in 10th, away from relegation trouble.
It is his first role since leaving St Johnstone last year, having led the Saints to their first major trophy with the Scottish Cup title in 2014. The 57-year-old also secured a string of top-six finishes and never finished below eighth.”It didn’t go the way I wanted obviously because of Covid. I had planned a few trips to clubs abroad and a couple of Premier League clubs to help with my development as a coach,” Wright said.”I was able to do some CPD (continuing professional development) work but in the main, I have been gardening, golfing, when we were allowed to golf, and doing a lot of walking.
New Kilmarnock manager Tommy Wright says he has the backing of the board should he want to add any out of contract players to his squad
“Apparently I have walked the length of the Sahara desert in the time I was off. It’s done me good, I lost a lot of weight and got fit.
“I have done a lot of reading, watched box sets and relaxed as best I could in difficult circumstances. But the main thing is I feel refreshed and ready to go.
“I genuinely haven’t missed it because I knew I had made the right decision. The early days were great.”I did miss the interaction with the players, that would be the biggest thing. I always felt man-management was something that helped me get success.”Contrary to what one or two players at St Johnstone thought, that I had one or two sons up there, I never got too close to them. I got as close as I needed to be to get the best out of them.”
Kris Boyd believes Tommy Wright can galvanise the Kilmarnock squad after being appointed as Alex Dyer’s replacement at Rugby Park
Wright was understood to have been considered for the Northern Ireland and Motherwell jobs prior to being drafted in by Kilmarnock following the departure of Alex Dyer.He has promised to bring organisation to Rugby Park and pledged to work to instil a winning mentality in the squad.”There’s been a lot of perception about how we played, how I managed, how I didn’t bring young players through,” Wright said ahead of his first game in charge against Motherwell on Wednesday.”When you look at the St Johnstone squad at the minute, there’s probably eight or nine that I brought through.
Highlights of the Scottish Premiership match between St Mirren and Kilmarnock
“What Kilmarnock will get is a team that is organised, that wants to play good football, play high-tempo football, and that’s what wins football matches. And I want to get a winning mentality into the squad.”I know the league, I have worked in the league for nine years, and going forward I know what types of players do well in the league.”And the added benefit is I have got James (Fowler) to help me with recruitment, because recruitment at St Johnstone was solely down to me, there was no infrastructure for me to fall back on and have that support. So that’s going to be a good thing for me to relieve the pressure.”