A quick glance at Steve Clarke’s coaching credentials would lead you to conclude quite reasonably that Kilmarnock have won a watch by managing to attract him back to Scotland as their new manager.

Quite apart from his 300-odd appearances for Chelsea as a player, he was Jose Mourinho’s right-hand man during that glorious spell for the London giants in the mid-noughties, as well as carrying on as an assistant at West Ham and Liverpool.

Having also struck out on his own to lead West Brom to their highest finish in the English top-flight for 32 years before rather harshly being shown the door, then having spells as the main man at Reading and Aston Villa, his coaching pedigree is clear for all to see.

But for the unassuming Saltcoats boy, the privilege of returning to his old manor at the age of 54 is all his.

Far from being bitter at the treatment he has received at some of the clubs on his road from Stamford Bridge to Rugby Park, while fiercely defending his managerial record, there is no hint from Clarke that the mammoth job he has taken on at Kilmarnock is beneath him.

He says that he is grateful to have been given a route back into the game after a year on the outside looking in, and he fully believes that he can take the club back to where he feels it belongs.

“I took a big decision when I left Chelsea because I probably could have stayed there forever,” Clarke said.

“But I've never been afraid of a challenge and trying to push myself and try something different. And this is something different.

“I've got to say, I don't think I've been given the credit I deserve for the job I did at West Brom. I took them to their highest ever finish, then the next year for reasons unbeknown to me they decided to make a quick change, which I didn't think was fair.

“I also took Reading to their first FA Cup semi-final in a really long time while being part of a project where we were going to try and build something. But these days people lose patience very quickly.

“So, in terms of being a manager, I was ready when I left Chelsea in 2008. I've had two stabs at it and I think I've done alright. Now I aim to make this job the best one I've done so far.

“It’s nice to work again because I was an out of work manager. I lost job at Villa this time last year, you spend all winter sitting in the house in the dark, watching games you don’t really have an interest in.

“There are a hell of a lot of managers who get one chance and never get another one. There are even more who get two chances and never get another one. I feel quite fortunate to have a third opportunity."

Clarke isn't looking on with envy at the clubs where his former colleagues like Jose Mourinho and Brendan Rodgers are plying their trade.

And he insists he is as hungry than ever to make a success of things at Kilmarnock.

“I’d been fortunate to always be involved in the Premier League and it’s difficult for a British coach to get a Premier League job," he said.

“It was disappointing to lose that but you just move on and try and further your career somewhere else.

“I don’t look at my career and think ‘if only’. I managed in the English Premier League so it was a helluva level to reach for a wee boy from Saltcoats

“I’m happy with what I’ve achieved so far but I’ve got more to achieve.”