|Date of Birth:|| 03/05/1961|
Steve McClaren took the opportunity to begin his managerial career with Middlesbrough in June 2001 after spending nearly two-and-a-half years as Sir Alex Ferguson's assistant at Old Trafford.
McClaren replaced the managerial team of Bryan Robson and Terry Venables at The Riverside after opting to join the North East club despite reported interest from West Ham United and Southampton.
Steve enjoyed a playing career with Hull, Derby, Lincoln, Bristol City and Oxford before his career was brought to a premature finish by injury when he was just 27 years old.
He quickly moved into coaching, beginning as Oxford United's reserve team coach before being snapped up by Jim Smith in 1995 to take up a coaching position at Derby County, costing the Rams £30,000 in compensation.
McClaren spent nearly four years as a coach at Derby, becoming Jim Smith's assistant manager as the Rams were promoted to the Premiership in 1995/96.
Subsequently, the duo managed an impressive settling-in period at Pride Park, finishing 12th and 9th in a division that has become increasingly difficult for newly-promoted teams to survive.
Following his success with Derby, McClaren was invited to succeed Brian Kidd as assistant manager to Alex Ferguson at Manchester United after his predecessor had left Old Trafford to try his hand at management with Blackburn.
In his first season with United, McClaren helped achieve an historic treble as the Reds collected the FA Cup, the Premiership trophy and the Champions League title. Quite an impressive first five months for the new man in the dug-out.
It was a test of character for McClaren to arrive at a club where he was not known to the players, in a close-knit squad that was under pressure to deliver following the disappointment of the previous year when Arsenal won the domestic double.
When joining United Steve signed a three-and-a-half year contract, which was expected to take him to the end of the 2001-02 season and Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement. Such was his impact at the club, many people began to tip him as the favourite to succeed the legendary Scot as United manager.
His rapport with the players shone through as United managed a hat-trick of domestic championships and his success at Old Trafford was further validated when he was appointed, together with Leicester's Peter Taylor, as caretaker England manager for a friendly in Italy prior to the appointment of Sven-Goran Eriksson.
He was due to remain as part of the FA's coaching staff for the national team but the Manchester United board refused him permission to continue working in such a capacity. It also became clear that they had other ideas in terms of Sir Alex's successor, something that encouraged McClaren to listen to offers from other clubs of a managerial position.
He was approached by Middlesbrough owner Steve Gibson and was quickly convinced that it would be the right move, following on from former United favourite Bryan Robson in the 'Boro hot-seat.
The club has also opened the door to his future involvement with the England set-up, something that will surely benefit head coach Sven-Goran Eriksson and the England team - many of whom McClaren knows very well from his time at Old Trafford.
|Luke Wilkshire: Boro meet Arsenal in FA Cup clash - 04/10/2002|
An Australian press article covering Luke's progress in the English game - penned during the build up to Boro's FA Cup tie against Arsenal More