Former professional boxer Woodhouse told The Non-League Paper on Sunday that he believes landing the Gainsborough Trinity job will allow him to keep showing he is taking the right route in management.
The 39-year-old woke up last Monday morning as Tadcaster Albion manager but by lunchtime was in the Trinity hot-seat after the NPL Premier Division club chose to restructure their management team.
Previous boss Liam King is now a first-team coach for Woodhouse, who brought assistant Martin Foster with him from Taddy, while Ross Hannah has returned to a purely playing role.
Former Sheffield United and Birmingham City midfielder Woodhouse has made no secret of his ambition to one day manage in the professional game.
With Blades boss Chris Wilder – who started out as a manager in Non-League with Alfreton, Halifax and Oxford Untied – the perfect role model, Woodhouse believes he is giving himself the best chance by learning his trade.
“The way I’ve decided to go is the long way!” Woodhouse told The NLP. “At times, it’s very frustrating. But the reason I’ve chosen the way I have is because I believe it gives you longevity in the game. I’ve had loads of opportunities to work in a full-time environment as a coach, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do.
“I wanted to learn at the bottom level and move through. I’ve probably been managing nine years and I’m only 39 so I’ve got a wealth of experience already and I believe I’m in a lot better position.
“As a coach in an academy you’re not really preparing yourself to be a manager. I’ve managed at difficult jobs – Goole when they were in a financial crisis, Hull United when the club folded, Tadcaster when the budget had been slashed.
“Really tough jobs that have served me well and I feel I’m in the perfect position now to really show what I can do at a higher level.
“Some of the things are crazy that you have to deal with – and not always to do with football. I always say I never pick a Non-League team until I see them sat down in the dressing room because that’s the only time I know who’s there!
“A good friend of mine, someone who went that way and is now reaping the rewards, is Chris Wilder. When I spoke to Chris about moving into management, his advice to me was: Do your YTS, do your apprenticeship, take difficult jobs and that’s how you’ll learn.
“At times I’m thinking, ‘Bloody hell, Chris, worst advice ever!’ But now I’ve gone into this job, which is a big job, and I feel more than ready not only to do the job but excel at it.”
Despite their lowly position in the table, Woodhouse doesn’t feel an overwhelming sense of gloom at Trinity.
It’s a club he believes should be higher up the pyramid and intends to take them there – but knows they must first address their current predicament.
Woodhouse, who left Albion second in the BetVictor NPL North West table, added: “I already had a fantastic job at Tadcaster. I just felt the opportunity at Gainsborough, the size of the club, it wasn’t something I could turn down.
“A few people have said to me, ‘You must be crazy to leave a push for the championship in the league below for a relegation dog-fight in the league above’. But, and I don’t mean this in any disrespectful way to Tadcaster at all, but once you compare the size of the two clubs it was a no-brainer.
“The project at Gainsborough, trying to build them back up and get them back to where they belong, was just too much for me to turn down. It’s going to be a really, really difficult job. No doubt about that. But one I am really excited about.”
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