I loved working under Chris Davies at Celtic - he is ready for Birmingham City

Chris Davies has been preparing for the chance Birmingham City have given him for two decades.

Davies is the man Blues have chosen to succeed Tony Mowbray as manager after a search which, they claim, saw 1,000 coaches analysed and more than 40 spoken to. He impressed Blues’ American owners Knighthead with his beliefs on how football should be played.

It is no secret that Davies – who has spent the last 14 years of his coaching career assisting Brendan Rodgers and Ange Postecoglou – wants to play possession-based football. In an interview Davies gave to Sky Sports last year, he said: "Possession-based football is my core idea."

There is no doubt that Blues have employed an exceptional coach, you can read a number of glowing references from qualified people to understand that. But the way Davies coached left a lasting impression on Scott Allan – the one-time Blues loanee who worked under Davies for three seasons at Celtic.

READ: Chris Davies checks in at Birmingham City as Leeds make Cody Drameh ploy

READ: Join our Birmingham City WhatsApp group for breaking news and transfer headlines

“They wanted to control the ball, that would be their philosophy,” Allan told BirminghamLive. “Chris is of that belief. You need to be on the same page if you’re being given the trust to go and coach the players in the first year, and in the second year he took a lot of the sessions.

“He wanted to control the ball. In wide areas, he wanted players getting at full-backs. All the modern staples you would look for.

“There were clear instructions. There was good clarity in how the team had to play on and off the ball. We were prepared for any situation that would arise in a game, whether that was going down to 10 men… We were very well prepared and very professional.

“Training was very enjoyable actually. It’s probably the most enjoyable training that I’ve had throughout my career, in terms of coming in every day. You never once heard a grumble, which you sometimes do.”

Davies worked alongside Rodgers at Swansea City, whom he joined as a first team coach at the tender age of 25, and Liverpool before following him to Celtic and Leicester. It was in Davies’ last two jobs with Rodgers, at Celtic and Leicester, where he took on more seniority.

Sources close to Leicester say Davies took responsibility for the bulk of the coaching and Allan says it was a similar story at Celtic. Rodgers - whose trophy cabinet exceeds double figures – clearly trusted Davies implicitly.

Allan added: “He was very hands on. At that time, Brendan had just come in but he did a lot. The fact Brendan was new to the club and wanted to get his message across, but still trusted Chris with a lot of the work, shows you the trust he had in him as a coach. Sometimes a manager wants to take full control to settle the club, whereas early doors he (Davies) had a big impact on how we were playing, especially in the defensive set-up.

“As a guy, he had a really good rapport with everyone in the squad. I think you need to have that personality, it goes a long way. It’s probably why he has been part of good groups.”

At 39, Davies will be one of the youngest managers in League One next season but Ipswich Town's Kieran McKenna and John Mousinho, who won the third tier with Portsmouth last term, have proved age is just a number in recent years. Make no mistake about it, Davies has more coaching experience than most, if not all, of the managers he will come up against next season.

Allan finished the interview by stating: “Forget about the age, he’s very experienced for his age and probably ready for the step now.”