Hull boss Steve Bruce says he will always be grateful for Sheffield United for giving him the chance to break into football management.
Bruce will mark his 700th match in football management with a trip to Old Trafford tomorrow and says experience has taught him not to panic about the Tigers’ recent plight.
There could be no more fitting arena for former Manchester United star Bruce - who was first appointed player-boss at Bramall Lane in 1998 - to mark his managerial milestone, but his mind will be more on arresting his side’s run of three consecutive defeats.
Reflecting on his eight-club managerial career, Bruce recalled how he was handed his first job almost by accident following the departure of Nigel Spackman at Sheffield.
Bruce said: “It all came about so quickly - at the time I was convinced I wanted to work with a youth team or soccer schools, then I got a phone call saying would I be prepared to be player-manager at Sheffield United and for that phone call I will always be grateful.
“I think 998 games as a player and 700 as a manager is a lot of Saturday afternoons.
“I never thought I would do 700 because the early days were very difficult, but I’ve been in the game a long time and it’s been fantastic.”