Date:Thursday January 19 2006
Itís difficult to imagine what must be going through Kenny Millers mind right now.
The decision facing the talented Scot today are possibly the most important of his life, and one that is going to shape his future in every way.
Miller has not made a secret of the fact that personal issues have, in part, shaped his decision to move on. Issues that see his heart back in Scotland, whilst he plies his trade in Wolverhampton.
His agent lists Millers priorities as family, football, and then finally money. So on a personal level, the choice looks an easy one. But would it be the best move professionally for a player who has shown, that if you match him with the best, he will rise to the occasion?
Millerís performances during the latter part of Scotlandís failed World Cup campaign raised his profile abroad dramatically, not least in Italy, and now several Serie A clubís are said to have shown interest in acquiring him.
What effect a move to Italy might have on his game is a point worth considering. As is the effect of a move to the notoriously uncompetitive Premier League of his homeland.
The Serie A may not be considered the best in the world anymore, but exposing himself to the influences of players like Schevchenko and Del Piero isnít going to harm his game.
Another option for him is a move to a Premiership club. The Glamour League. The stomping ground of greats. Several clubs have been rumoured to covet him and not being fully given an opportunity to shine at that level with Wolves, may leave him feeling he has unfinished business there. But it would also require the loan of Robbie Savageís road map to take him closer to home.
There is little doubt that Miller would relish the challenge of both leagues. And the benefit to his game, as well as his bank balance could be immense. But at what cost to his personal life?
But there could also be a cost in a move back home. What if the fans of Celtic fail to accept the arrival of a former Rangers player, as has happened before? Itís a big risk for the player no matter what the clubís official line, and one he will have to think long and hard about before making his decision.
Its impossible to put a cash figure on the happiness a family can bring. And children are a far greater challenge than a professonal career in sports. Trying to find a balance between career and family isnít a dilemma restricted to sportsmen. It is a juggling act many fathers share, and in that, Kenny Miller has my deepest sympathy.
Wherever he goes, he is sure to succeed, be it England Scotland, or Italy. But in choosing family over financial inducement , he will be showing a side that not many are fortunate enough to see and he will win the admiration of many. And hopefully the heart of one.
Good luck Kenny
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