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Last Updated: Thursday, 8 September 2005, 10:32 GMT 11:32 UK
Keown begins coaching education
By Chris Bevan

Martin Keown
Martin did well in his initial training - now he has to put that into practice
Guy Whittingham on Martin Keown
Former Arsenal and England defender Martin Keown has chosen to begin his coaching education at tiny Wessex League side AFC Newbury.

Keown, 39, has linked up with Newbury boss Guy Whittingham - who is also his tutor on his Uefa B coaching course.

Whittingham - a prolific striker for Portsmouth and Aston Villa during his playing days - told BBC Sport: "Where Martin takes it from here is up to him.

"We're helping him, and he is bringing his experience to a team like Newbury."

Keown ended his playing days at nearby Reading at the end of last season, and since then has been busy learning his trade on the other side of the touchline.

And Whittingham, who works for the Professional Footballers Association as a coach educator as well as being Newbury's player-manager, has been showing him the ropes.

It is part of his job to help ex-players like Keown get their coaching badges, and keep them in the game.

Whittingham added: "Within the structure of the course Martin is doing at the moment, he has to do certain coaching categories.

"At the moment he is observing games. He has to analyse them and find out a team's strengths and weaknesses over a certain amount of matches, and then coach the weakness.

Age: 39
Born: Oxford
Career games: 758
Career goals: 10
Clubs: Arsenal (84-86), Brighton (loan 85), Aston Villa (86-89), Everton (89-93), Arsenal (93-04), Leicester (04-05), Reading (05)
International caps: 43
International goals: 2

"He has done his initial training, once you have done that you go out and get some initial experience and fill out your coaching log.

"He only lives up in Oxford so he is happy to come down and do it with us at Newbury. We will help him as much as we can.

"I should think he will be with us up until Christmas at least. It is all about when he is available.

"We are just here for him to come and use us when he can - he has got other interests outside of football."

Keown has also been training with Arsenal since the summer to keep fit - although a playing comeback for the Gunners is unlikely to materialise.

But has he picked up any of Arsene Wenger's coaching characteristics from his time under him at Highbury?

Whittingham believes it is too early to tell.

"He has just started," he said. "We have all got to start somewhere."

"It's like going back and starting all over again. That's what you've got to do - I had to do it. You reach a pinnacle as a player, now you're starting another career as a coach. That's the process.

"Martin has done his initial training - and he did well in that. And now he's got to come out and put all that initial training into practice.

"I don't know what his next move wil be. All we're trying to do is give him the resources to go out and do his coaching."


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