Stewart Downing is set to consider his playing options after being released by Blackburn Rovers, a report from The Lancashire Telegraph has revealed.
It was confirmed on Friday that Downing has been released by Rovers after two years at Ewood Park, during which time he made 62 appearances in all competitions for the Lancashire club.
The midfielder will be 37 by the time the 2021/22 campaign gets underway, and got an early taste of coaching when he helped out with Rovers’ Under 23s backroom team during their final two games of this season.
But despite that, it seems that there is no guarantee just yet, that we have seen the last of Stewart Downing the player.
According to this latest update, Downing will explore offers to continue his playing career into next season, following his departure from Ewood Park this summer.
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If however, no chances arise, then the former England international is said to be keen to go into coaching in the future, although it is thought to be unclear at this stage as to whether there would be a chance for him to do that with Rovers.
It will certainly be interesting to see just how things play out with regards to Downing’s future over the next few weeks.
From an ability perspective, there can be no doubt that Downing can still make an impression in the Football League, although at his age the question will be around whether he is still physically able to cope with the demands of doing that week in week out.
If that does not prove to be the case, then a move into coaching does seem an option for Downing, and you feel it would be a popular move if Blackburn were to manage to keep him around in such a capacity, given the insight he could provide for the younger members of their squad.
Indeed, if this is to be the end of Downing as a player, then you do have to applaud the career he has had, during which time he has made a significant impact at a number of different levels, and he should be well remembered for that.