Former Hibs assistant boss Garry Parker makes return to football
Former Hibs No.2 Garry Parker has joined Oxford United's coaching staff ahead of Saturday's match with Coventry City.
The 53-year-old, who served as first team coach at Celtic under Neil Lennon and teamed up with the Northern Irishman again during his spell at Hibs, has been tasked with watching the U's opposition each week and reporting back to the management team as well as fulfilling a key role on the training pitch.
In 11 v 11 games, Parker will manage one team and set them up to replicate the style of the first team's opposition.
Speaking to Oxford's website Parker - who is from nearby Kidlington - said: “If you’ve got the opposition’s set-up against Oxford’s XI they can see what they are up against – it’s going to help.
“Obviously it’s not going to be exactly the same because it’s different types of player, but it gives them an idea of how Coventry play.
“Having the chance to work for Oxford is nice as a local lad and if I can help then it’s brilliant."
Parker had already been assisting United on an informal basis, assisting in transfers, and could be handed a more important role if other staff members move on.
Manager Karl Robinson added: “Certain staff are moving on to other situations, so we had that opportunity to do something.
“It’s a different role which gets him on the grass one day a week, but also gets him around the place. Being from Oxford he knows the importance of having a successful team.
“We’re thankful to have him and he’s going to be a big boost to us."
A midfielder in his playing days, Parker had spells with Luton Town, Hull City, Nottingham Forest, Aston Villa and Leicester City.
He has had spells working with Lennon at Celtic, Bolton and Hibs.