‘When you have a squad of 20-plus players, which is what you have to have, you have to fight as much as you can to do the job right,’ he begins. ‘When you are trying to select squads and teams as you go through the season, you are trying to do it honestly and you front it up with the players.
‘Even though they can be some difficult conversations, I think they respect that, particularly modern players. In years gone by, managers may have dropped players out and told them to get on with it in that old-school kind of way but I try to be as open and as honest with as many players as I can be.
‘It’s not always easy. I can’t speak to everybody every week but I don’t mind it and actually, when you have those conversations, it helps you build the relationship for good or for bad.