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FAMILY PLANNING

John Terry revealed the brilliant advice Dean Smith gave him after hammering a player struggling with secret family problems.

Terry, 40, was Smith’s assistant at Aston Villa for three years before leaving the role that summer.

JT has learned a lot from the new Norwich boss, particularly in terms of staff management, as he is taking his own steps to become a # 1 in the dugout.

The Chelsea legend appeared as an expert being in sports and remembered the classic story.

“I won’t name the player, though [I was] As an assistant at Aston Villa under Dean, who thinks about the players all the time, the guys love him and of course it’s a shame he lost his job.

“We trained and I wasn’t happy with a particular player. I kind of dug it up and got it one to one.

“I said to the lighting technician: ‘I am not happy’. He said, ‘OK, explain it to him.’

“I sat him down and basically got mad at him. I said, ‘Not good enough, you’re not on the team, it won’t make you play like that.’

“He came back, we had a little debate. I told the manager and he said, ‘Did you ask him about his family life?’

“It didn’t even cross my mind, not at all. The next morning I texted him and said, ‘Come in early, we’ll have a little breakfast.’

“It was during Covids, his family was gone, he hadn’t seen his mom and dad, he had just had a baby and I was like, ‘Wow’. I learned so much while working on these little things under Dean.

“We ended up giving him a day off so he could spend time with his family.

“It was amazing – after that he was like a new player struggling to get back on the team. Again, it’s man management.

“Nowadays you need a touch, a soft side.”

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