Former Spurs' star Gary Stevens: I'm loving my new life in Thailand

When people ask me how I've come to be working in Thailand, my initial response is always: "I'm a lucky man".

I've often been quoted that I would prefer to be lucky than good and I stick by that. Of course, you need to know your trade, too.

Having coached at various levels and in a growing collection of different countries, I'm delighted to find myself as head coach of Army United FC in the Thai Premier League. I've been here since July.

Of course, it is very different to North London where I spent seven years of my career at Tottenham Hotspur (winning the 1984 UEFA Cup and taking a successful penalty in the shoot-out in the final), East Anglia where I was a youth player for Ipswich Town or England's South Coast where I had enjoyable spells at Brighton and Portsmouth. I won seven England caps and made the squad for the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, appearing in two matches.

I know far too many English coaches who perhaps aren't as willing to travel as I am. They feel that they should be able to secure a good position in British football. But the game now operates on a global basis. A few more need to accept how football has moved on, and go with the flow.

When I left my last position as assistant manager at Sligo Rovers FC in the League of Ireland, it was mid-June and I just knew another opportunity would soon present itself. Sure enough, before the end of July, I was flying to Bangkok for my first ever job in Asia -- at the age of 52.

My last five coaching positions have taken me from England to Gibraltar, from Gib onto Gabala FC in Azerbaijan and then to the Republic of Ireland before this latest role in the Thai Premier League.

Founded in 1916, Army United FC are based in the Phayathai district of Bangkok. The club is known as 'The Home of Gentlemen' and above the players' entrance at the Royal Thai Army Stadium are written four words: 'Intelligent, Knowledgeable, Modern, Visionary'.

It's difficult to compare players in the countries where I've worked as they are often at contrasting levels and their football nations are at different stages of development.

But what I've had some time to look at the strengths and weaknesses of Thai players, in general. Their best quality is probably their very powerful desire to learn and improve. What they could work on is their overall fitness and the ability to push through the pain barrier when necessary.

Lifestyle-wise, I am loving Bangkok. I have a nice condo on the 16th floor, close to the Ari and Saphan Kwai BTS stations, with great views. While it is a very busy and noisy street, it falls silent when I go out to the pool at the back of my condo.

Occasionally I'll travel to training on the back of a scooter taxi. It's like a Moto GP race at the traffic lights at times -- absolutely fantastic fun.

And of course, there's the Thai food. I am really into it and often eat in the street restaurants, which are great value and full of flavour. I love the Pad Thai with prawns. I like spicy food -- however 'spicy' in Thailand takes it to another level.

I would recommend any coach to step out of their comfort zone and work abroad. The more challenges that an overseas job presents -- such as climate, culture, facilities and language -- the greater the benefit aspiring managers will have.

I work with a life coach, John Campbell, who has taught me how to remove negative thought patterns which can be so debilitating. My positive approach to life in coaching players is having an impact. Slowly, I'm getting this message across to my players: how they think, and what they think, is as important as how they train and behave as professional athletes.

Yes, I would love to eventually find myself back with a club in England but I'm certainly in no rush. There is a huge amount of growth and potential here at Army United FC and in Thai football, as a whole.

I would be thrilled if I could assist in turning some of that massive potential into reality. There has been a number of foreigners who have had a big impact on Thai football. I would love to join that select group.

You never know how long you are likely to be at a professional club. The 'hire and fire' culture is madness in my opinion. Stability is a 'must' to build and develop. A key figure in that, of course, is the head coach.

I signed an initial contract for four months and I'm likely to stay here in 2015 after Army United FC's solid, ninth-place finish this season.

I'm confident that my time here in Thailand will be a 'win-win' for me -- and for football -- in a fantastic part of the world.