JI-SUNG Park is back at QPR to learn the ropes as a football coach under the guidance of Chris Ramsey.
The former R’s midfielder – who is the most decorated Asian player in the history of the game – is coaching the club’s Under-16 players as part of his B Licence.
Speaking at our Heston training site ahead of an evening session, Park said: “Having played for QPR I am really interested to see how they develop their younger players.
“I have learnt lots from the players as well as the coaches.”
Park, who spent two years at QPR after joining in the summer of 2012, admits he has been impressed by QPR’s Head of Coaching and says Ramsey’s reputation in the game is well deserved.
“I have been surprised at how enthusiastic Chris is towards football and particularly towards the youth levels,” Park explained.
“It is not normal to see someone who is involved with the first team, like Chris is, so involved with the whole youth system. It has been really impressive to see.
“You can see his philosophy which is brilliant. It all takes time but when the process is doing well, the club benefit long-term from it. I have learnt a lot of things from him.”
Ramsey has been at QPR for seven years and was previously the Regional Director of Coaching for the FA. Having recently acted as a mentor for Yaya Toure, Ramsey is now offering his advice and guidance to Park - and the 40-year-old admits his eyes have been opened while he has been working under Ramsey’s tutorship.
“Chris has lots of experience and I see how he listens to people,” Park said.
“He listens to opinions and then makes his own decision based on the best way he can influence players. That is why he has such a good reputation as a coach.
“It has surprised me how much I have learnt. It is not just about your skill or ability, it is about your mentality too.
“People might think being a coach is quite similar to being a player. For me, I have realised it is totally different. It is not just about tactics, it is everything – leadership, communication, how you can influence every single player.”
Park joined K League 1 club Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors as an advisor in January and is looking forward to the next stage of his career.
“When I look at Asia or South Korea, administration needs improving compared to Europe and I will look that way,” he explained.