MIFA Honorary President Graham Williams In Conversation
As West Brom legend Graham Williams celebrates his birthday- we ask him questions about his incredible career.
Graham Williams, former professional footballer (Welsh International), manager and scout. Graham is honorary President of MIFA and demonstrates a zest and passion to see young players achieving their potential. Each year Graham visits our academy to check on the progress of young developing footballers. Graham’s love for the game and spirit of competition and adventure makes him a positive example and role model for all young players. Graham has a spirit of internationalism, having played domestically in England and gaining international caps for Wales. Graham went on to successfully manage clubs in Kuwait, Greece, Bahrain, Kenya and Finland before accepting a scouting role for Spurs.
How long did you scout for Spurs for?
What did you look for when scouting a player for Spurs?
I would always turn up early and watch the warmup first. You can tell a lot from the warmup; you can see how keen he is, do they dress smart? Does he look sharp, does he look like he’s up for it?
During the game, what is his attitude like? What about his movement off the ball? Does he read the game well? We don’t want a player who sulks. Does he take instructions well, most of all does he really want to be a footballer?
I would always look for the good points in his play rather than the negative. I always say ‘diamonds stand out.’
Did you enjoy your time at Spurs?
Yes, it’s a great club. I always like the way they’ve always played football. The club looked after me well during the 10 years I scouted for them . My first manager at WBA was Vic Buckingham who had come from Spurs and played a good type of football. Simple and flowing we had such a good team Vic built a good team and it played in the style he’d been used to at Spurs. Spurs also had some great Welsh players over the years.
What are your feelings about your time at WBA?
When I first went, I couldn’t understand what they were saying. I was a young lad from Wales and most of the players were local to West Brom at that time.
Seriously, West Brom was my first love. I enjoyed my time there so much. Like any first love you always remember them so well. We had a great team and I enjoyed it so much. Wherever I am in the world, West Brom is the first result I always look for.
Do you still visit the Hawthorns?
Oh yes, I help where I can, I still do talks in the lounges on matchdays and for the community section as well.
What do you think of the current West Brom team?
The coach (Slaven Bilic) is a good one. They are a very outstanding side in the Championship, they will need just 4 or 5 players to compete in the Premier League.