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Daily Record
Daily Record
Andy McGilvray

Former Ayr United and Albion Rovers star explains thinking behind taking Gartcairn management gig

Mick Dunlop believes Gartcairn is the perfect club at the right time for him to take his first steps into management.

Former Ayr United, Queen’s Park and Albion Rovers defender Dunlop spent last season as assistant to David Gormley at Lowland League club Broomhill, but this is his first time out front.

Dunlop is looking forward to the challenge in the West of Scotland League, and intends to take the Airdrie club up to the Premier League if he can.

The 39-year-old, who replaces Willie Kinniburgh at the helm, said: “I’m delighted with the opportunity.

“It’s a club that has a lot going for it – great facilities, a great ground, and when I met the guys involved, I was really impressed with their plans for the club, moving forward.

“I feel that it’s the right time for me, and the perfect club to move forward with. This is my first managerial gig on my own, so that’s the exciting part.

“Last year was excellent, getting the opportunity to work with David Gormley – it was such a great learning experience, going into the Lowland League.

“It was tough; we had taken over about a week before the season started, so the first half of the season was quite difficult, until we could get our own players in January.

“Thankfully we managed to get about six or seven players in, and finished the season strongly, which was good.

“That year will be invaluable for me, with regards to the experience I gained.

“I’m really looking forward to the first opportunity as a manager in my own right, and the work has already started, with regards to planning for next year, trying to get players in, and all that kind of stuff.”

Dunlop sat down with his players on Monday for a chat about how he sees the season going, but refused to implicitly nail down his targets.

He said: “I’m just looking forward to the training starting back, to pre-season, and then getting the games played.

“We’ve got about 10 or 11 players under contract for next season, so I’ll have a chat with them, but I’m obviously looking to bring my own players in as well, to try and help the current group, just so we can be as strong as we possibly can be.

“It’s an exciting time and the first season in the new West of Scotland League format. It gives an opportunity for three promotion spots, so it will be all to play for, and I’m really looking forward to the challenge.”

Follow Lanarkshire Live Sport on Twitter via @LanLiveSport, like us on Facebook or find us on Instagram for the latest sports news, pictures and video.

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