Kilsyth Rangers boss Hogg quits on eve of new season

Keith Hogg as quit as Kilsyth Rangers boss
Keith Hogg as quit as Kilsyth Rangers boss

Kilsyth Rangers manager Keith Hogg has quit just two days before the start of the new junior football season.

The 37-year-old resigned on Monday night, leaving the club without a boss as they prepare to face local rivals Cumbernauld United in their Sectional League Cup opener at Guy’s Meadow tonight (Wednesday).

Player Iain Diack and goalkeeping coach will take temporary charge while the club seek a replacement. Hogg, whose assistant Kevin McBride resigned last week, took over as Rangers boss in the summer of 2014.

Interest has already been expressed in the post and club secretary William Dunbar said a meeting will be held later in the week to discuss whether to approach potential candidates or to advertise the post.

And the club will be looking to get a permanent successor in place as soon as they can as they prepare for a potentially pivotal season which offers a unique opportunity for First Division sides to attain Premiership status.

Kilsyth just missed out on promotion last season when, having led the First Division for much of the season, they finished third and then lost a play-off to Kilwinning who finished third bottom of the Premier Division.

But the expansion of the top division from 12 to 16 teams in 2018-19 means the top four First Division sides will go up to the top flight automatically, while fifth and sixth will stay have a play-off chance against the bottom two Premier sides.

However Rangers have also lost a number of key players from last season. Mark Tyrrell and Paul McBride, outstanding last season, have both retired, Nicky Prentice has been snapped up by Glasgow giants Pollok and Alan Flannigan has moved on for domestic reasons.