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The QPR defender believes that the quality of managers he has played under since a young age will significantly aid him ahead of his first role in management with the MLS side

QPR defender Ryan Nelsen believes he has enough coaching experience to manage MLS side Toronto FC.

The 35-year-old New Zealand international, who is yet to officially retire from playing, accepted the role of head coach with the Canadian-based MLS side on Tuesday.

Nelsen has made 21 appearances for the Premier League side this season, but has cited his body's increasing inability to stand up to the strains of top flight football as a major reason in opting to move into coaching.

It will be his first management role, and despite the fact the former Blackburn player has no coaching qualifications, he is confident he can be a successful manager based on the knowledge he has gathered from various bosses he has played under in his career. 

He told reporters: "I've been kind of coaching since I was 20-21. I've been so fortunate enough to have managers and coaches in my career that have been very influential.

"The likes of Bobby Clark, Mark Hughes, Harry Redknapp, Sam Allardyce, Paul Ince, and all their coaches that have belonged to their teams. I've been learning and taking in from all these since [I was] 21. 

"I've always kind of had a curiosity for the game, and using my playing opportunities to further my knowledge of the game.

"Do I have any badges? No, but I'd like to think that I've been under some pretty good teachers in my time."

Despite the MLS season commencing in two months' time on March 9, the former New Zealand captain has yet to confirm when he will take control of the team and will be staying with Redknapp's side in the immediate future, intending to play several more games for the west London club.

He added: "Pre-season's already been planned. Every training session, everything's already been planned, and I know that when I'm not there, I've got 100 per cent full faith in the coaching staff.

"I've had several conversations with Harry and Tony Fernandes, the owner, and they've been so understanding of my situation.

"They understand that when I play, I'm playing on glass knees and glass ankles and it's a bit of a struggle, so they know I'm at the end. They also know their predicament they're in, and it's a major predicament.

"I have an obligation. I really want QPR to stay up and kick on because of Harry and because of the owner, they're just fantastic people."

Toronto's president Kevin Payne expressed his comfort with Nelsen missing the side's pre-season preparation, believing that he will be worth the wait.

"We're not sure when he'll join us. We want to be very respectful of QPR," he stated.

"My feeling about Ryan is that he's going to be leading this team for five years to come. If I have to wait a couple of months for him to start that process, I can afford to wait. I'd rather do that than make the wrong decision or a decision I didn't want to make for the short term."

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