Houllier moves on from management
Former Liverpool and Aston Villa coach Gerard Houllier says he is highly unlikely to return to management after the heart problems which forced a premature end to his spell at Villa Park at the end of last season.
Houllier’s spell in charge of Villa finished prematurely after just nine months as he missed the closing weeks of the season following a spell in hospital due to severe chest pains.
The 63-year-old, who underwent open-heart surgery lasting 11 hours while in charge of Liverpool back in 2001, said he was still not back to full health.
As a result, “I’ve got to admit the fact that, probably, I won’t go back into management,” he told talkSPORT radio.
“I’m practically 85 per cent. I’m still getting there. I need maybe a couple of months.
“It was the dissection of the descending aorta and it was probably not as urgent but it’s a bad thing.”
Houllier said given the demands of the job he had to recognise that “obviously, the profession that I used to have was not the best to keep in good health because of what I have.”
Now working as a television pundit, Houllier experienced a tough season at Villa, amid suggestions of player and fan unrest.
Striker Gabriel Agbonlahor claimed last week he would have quit the club had the Frenchman and assistant Gary McAllister remained in charge, criticising the latter’s approach to training.
Houllier leapt to the defence of the Scot, saying: “I was a bit surprised that one of the players was having a go at his training sessions.
“Because, truly, he is a modern, very up-to-date and very good coach.
“In fact, some players really improved.
“We could see some progress in Ashley Young and Stewart Downing in the way they played and the way they even increased their technical abilities.”