Coaching at Chelsea helped Hasselbaink

Former Chelsea striker Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink believes the time he spent at Stamford Bridge easing himself into coaching helped him land his first management job in England.

The 42-year-old, who became a fans favourite during four goal-laden years with the Blues from 2000, has taken over as boss of League Two side Burton Albion.

Hasselbaink retired from playing at the end of the 2007/08 season and had offers in coaching and management, but believes not rushing into a manager’s position was a wise move.

“I started doing bits and pieces at Chelsea with the youth,” Hasselbaink said.

“It was a difficult time because you want to get in straight away, but looking back it was good.

“The first year I did not do a lot. I spent more time at Chelsea than anywhere else, looking around and seeing things.”

The former Netherlands international, who also played for Middlesbrough, Charlton Athletic and Cardiff City, scored 70 league goals in 119 starts for the Blues – and 88 goals in 177 appearances in total.

Hasselbaink was manager of Belgian second division side Royal Antwerp last season but turned down the offer of a new contract for football and family reasons.

His wife is British, he still lives in Surrey – not far from Chelsea’s training ground in Cobham – and Hasselbaink wanted to be closer to home.

“I wanted a job in England,” he explained. “I applied for a few jobs but when Burton Albion became available I jumped at it.

“It’s a brilliant opportunity for me. A club that is stable, well run and a good family club with the right ideas. I fit with the club and I saw myself as the right man.”

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