Smith was the man who have McClaren his break trough as coach at Derby, and is still a close friend of the national coach.
Smith told The People: “The time Steve has as England boss is perfect for his style because he is a planner and very good at organising things.
“Steve possesses a good personality and can handle all the egos.
“He showed that at Manchester United when he dug out the likes of Roy Keane.
“He is a very confident boy and very good at his job. It’s an easy job in some ways because you’re doing nothing for four to six weeks at a time, except watching games.
“But a Premiership manager is on the button for seven days a week.
“It’s easier in terms of pressure, too. At Boro he had the fans on him every day and you can’t get away.
“Steve is a great manager with good ideas. He has had a bit of luck along the way, but we all need that.
“He was the best British choice for the England job and he has shown that with results and bold decisions.”