McKinnon set for Stark’s Park unveiling as Malpas steps down

Ray McKinnon will be unveiled at Stark's Park on Monday
Ray McKinnon will be unveiled at Stark's Park on Monday

Ray McKinnon will be unveiled as the new Raith Rovers manager at a lunch-time press conference at Stark’s Park tomorrow (Monday).

McKinnon’s appointment was confirmed on Friday night, just hours after the club announced the departure of director of football Maurice Malpas.

McKinnon, a former team mate of Malpas during their Dundee United days, joins from League One side Brechin City, where he has managed for the past three years.

The 44-year-old had been offered the Raith post earlier in the week, but asked for time to consider interest from St Mirren.

After the recently relegated Buddies moved for Dumbarton boss Ian Murray on Friday, McKinnon’s move to Raith was confirmed.

Eric Drysdale, Raith chief executive, said: “Ray ticks all the boxes for us, and we are confident that he can take the club forward from here.”

McKinnon’s playing career involved spells at Dundee United, Nottingham Forest, Aberdeen, Luton Town and Livingston, commanding over £1.2m in transfer fees.

He also had two short spells at Stark’s Park, firstly playing two games at the start of season 2000-01 but the club was unable to meet his wage demands.

He returned to the Kirkcaldy outfit in 2003, playing what proved to be his final 12 games in senior football, before joining junior outfit Lochee United.

It was in the junior ranks where McKinnon took his first steps into coaching, firstly as player-coach at Broughtly Athletic before returning to Lochee as manager in 2006.

McKinnon enjoyed four successful years at Thomson Park, winning the East Superleague before guiding the club to the third round of the Scottish Cup, losing out to Ayr United in a replay.

McKinnon left Lochee in 2010 to take up a new job as Technical Development Officer with the SFA, before landing the Brechin City job in October 2012.

In three years at Glebe Park, McKinnon has twice taken the club into the promotion play-offs, suffering defeat on both occasions.

Last season, McKinnon guided Brechin to a 17-game unbeaten run, winnning three out of four League One manager of the month awards in 2015.

Brechin chairman Ken Ferguson spoke highly of his departed manager’s time in charge of the Angus club.

He said: “It will come as no surprise to anyone who knows him that Ray would eventually appear on the radar of the bigger clubs, given the success he has brought to Brechin City and the pride and professionalism he has demonstrated in the job.”