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Everton on the cusp of Europa progress

Everton about an hour ago
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By ESPN Staff
Dec 4, 2007

Advocaat not interested in England or Scotland posts

Dutch coach Dick Advocaat believes the England managers' job is one of the most difficult in football and has denied he is a candidate for either the vacant English and Scottish posts. Advocaat, the one-time Rangers chief, is now in charge of new Russian champions Zenit St Petersburg, who take on Everton at Goodison Park tomorrow in the UEFA Cup. The 60-year-old, who once took Holland to the World Cup semi-finals, has just turned down the job of Australia's new coach to sign a new one-year contract with Zenit, now believed to be the richest club in Russia. And as he prepares for a showdown with David Moyes' Merseysiders, Advocaat had strong views about the state of the game on both sides of the border. He said: 'I seem to be linked all over with jobs, but I have signed a new contract with Zenit and I am not interested in either the English or Scottish jobs. 'My countryman Guus Hiddink certainly has all the credentials for the England job, but it is certainly one of the toughest jobs in Europe because of all the pressure on the manager. 'They may well now look for another foreign manager, they have tried an Englishman (Steve McClaren) and that has not worked. Now they may have to look abroad again. 'But it is such a touch job, the media put so much pressure on you in the UK. I remember when I was in Glasgow we did very well for a while and had lots of friends, but when things started to go wrong they punish you. 'The same happens in England. You are followed from morning to night, it becomes the toughest job possible.' Advocaat has a high regard for Moyes, the pair having become friends when he was working in the Scottish game. He said: 'David Moyes is doing a really good job at Everton, he must be doing something right to have been at the club for six years. 'I take my hat off to him because he is not one of the game's big spenders.' But Advocaat was soon back on his theme of what is wrong with the English game, saying: 'It has nothing to do with money and how much players earn. Even the coaches are millionaires, so it is not a case of not being able to handle very rich men. 'But there must be something wrong. How do you explain England not being in the Euro 2008 finals? 'And the same goes for Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. And you have the best competition in the world here in the Premier League.' And while Advocaat believes England will now look for a foreign coach, he believes Scotland should stick with a Scot. He says: 'Walter Smith and Alex McLeish, both good friends of mine, did an excellent job with Scotland. Maybe the quality of coaches is not there now, maybe Gordon Strachan but he is too young. 'But they should definitely look for a Scotsman first before thinking of anyone else.' On tomorrow's UEFA tie, with Everton needing a point to qualify and Zenit almost as close, he says: 'When the draw for this group was made, I said that Zenit, Everton and AZ Alkmaar would be the three qualifiers, and I expect that now to be the case.'