Grant Holt: Barrow player-coach role more attractive than higher division offers

Grant Holt
Grant Holt helped Hibernian to Scottish Premiership promotion in the 2016-17 season

Former Premier League striker Grant Holt says he turned down offers from higher division clubs to become a coach in non-league football.

Holt, 36, returned to National League side Barrow as player-coach last week in the twilight of a career which has included top-flight spells with Norwich City and Aston Villa.

He has scored 192 goals in 565 appearances in an 18-year career.

"I worked for three years to get my badges," he told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"I still absolutely love playing but wanted to do the coaching as well.

"When I had chance to step up to Barrow, I felt it was a good fit, I've got a close association to the club and wanted to come back and do it."

Although the surroundings at Holker Street are very similar, Barrow have climbed two steps higher in the football pyramid into the National League since Holt's last spell in south-west Cumbria.

Owner Paul Casson has plans to take the club into the Football League for the first time since 1972, but form this season has been disappointing with the Bluebirds in the relegation places after 19 games.

Ex-Gillingham boss Aidy Pennock was recently appointed after the departures of Paul Cox and Micky Moore.

"There's enough potential," Holt added.

"We've got enough within the squad but we just need a bit of structure and direction which the manager already highlighted.

"That's a work in progress, it doesn't happen overnight."