Just who is Newcastle United’s new assistant manager, Ian Cathro

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Ian Cathro will be assistant to Newcastle United head coach Steve McClaren – but what is his story?

The Scot, former assistant manager at Valencia, is relatively unknown in England. Here, we take a look at the man who has accepted the challenge of serving as Steve McClaren’s number two at St James’ Park.

WHO IS IAN CATHRO?

Born in July 1986, Cathro learned his football in his home town of Dundee, but did it the hard way after injury ended his hopes of a playing career barely before it had started.

WHERE DID HE PLAY HIS FOOTBALL?

Cathro’s playing career did not progress much beyond youth level, at which he represented Forfar and Clyde and although he played amateur football for Brechin, he never made a professional appearance.

HOW DID HE GET INTO COACHING?

Cathro famously started his own coaching school as a teenager and as it became apparent that the playing side of the game would not provide him with a living, he turned his attention to developing players.

WHEN DID HIS BIG BREAK ARRIVE?

His work with young players in Dundee caught the eye of then Dundee United boss Craig Levein, who was so impressed that he had him installed as head of the Tangerines’ youth Academy at the age of just 22. During his time at Tannadice, he also worked for the Scottish Football Association’s youth development programme.

HOW DID HE MOVE INTO SENIOR FOOTBALL?

Cathro had the good fortune to meet Nuno Espirito Santo while they were completing their coaching qualifications under the SFA, and was appointed as his assistant at Portuguese side Rio Ave in 2012. The pair led the club to two cup finals and European qualification for the first time.

HOW DID HE END UP AT VALENCIA?

Santo took Cathro with him to the Mestalla Stadium when he was appointed as Juan Antonio Pizzi’s successor in July last year, and they guided Valencia to a fourth-place finish behind Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid at the end of their first season.

WHY WAS HE AVAILABLE TO NEWCASTLE?

Cathro decided last season that he would return home for family reasons at the end of the campaign. He was linked with the vacant manager’s job at Rangers before Mark Warburton was appointed, but has now decided to further his career on Tyneside.