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Let's get this Low on the road - new Locos boss Andy

By Grant Milne

NEW Inverurie Locos boss Andy Low said it was “a dream come true” to be handed the reins.

The 35-year-old former Harlaw player has made the step-up from first-team coach after the club parted company with Neil Cooper last week.

Assistant Steven Park will remain in his role, alongside goalkeeping coach Stevie Pratt.

Low had previously been second-in-command at Buckie Thistle prior to returning to the club in January this year.

Speaking to The Advertiser, Low believed he's following a trend by making the transition into management.

He commented: “I've worked my way up from being a player to a coach and now I feel I deserve the chance as manager.

“I'm delighted, it's a dream come true to have been given the manager's job here.

“This is a great club, with great guys behind it and also a top playing squad.

“I feel like I've got the experience needed already, I've been involved in the Highland League since I was 17.

“When I look around the league at the other managers – Steven Mackay, Mark Cowie, Dean Donaldson, Martin Skinner – these are all guys I've played against so now I think I deserve the opportunity to go and prove myself against them.”

Low and Park were in temporary charge for the Scottish Cup win at Rothes on Saturday, and the new man says he was adamant he wanted the job on a permanent basis.

He added: “There was a good feeling in the dressing room after the game on Saturday, we played really well, even at training during the week we decided to change one or two things and the players were really positive.

“I was desperate to get the chance [to get the job full-time].

“Myself and Steven said we'd take the team on Saturday to see how it went.

“Obviously I had to go and speak to my family over the weekend and then the club said they were happy to give me the opportunity.”

Temperatures may be cooling but the struggle at the top of the Highland League is boling and Low's first acid test couldn't come sooner with a trip to Fraserburgh this weekend, presenting an immediate chance to overtake the Bellslea side.

He continued: “Mark Cowie's done a great job at the Broch.

“It will be a hard test but I believe Locos should be involved in big games every week.

“We want to be fighting at the top end.

“It's a great opportunity to do that on Saturday against a good team and we'll be right up for it.”

Ex-players at the helm is a route Locos have gone down before with Scott Buchan and Kenny Coull in joint charge up until December 2016.

And club chairman Mike Macaulay asserted that Low and Park have all the tools to bring success to Harlaw.

He said: “Andy's got a lot of Highland League experience, he's won everything there is to win, he's a B-licenced coach, has a good verbal attitude towards things and is a good communicator.

“He's been an apprentice to Neil Cooper here and also 'Spider' (Graeme Stewart) at Buckie and we feel he's the right man for the job.

“Scott and Kenny were probably quite raw as they went from player straight to management, but Andy has been in that position with Buckie and Steven has had a while as assistant, so there's a lot of experience.”

The chairman did not disclose the reasons for Cooper's departure at a time when Locos sat 2nd in the table, but commented: “I have a lot of respect for Neil, he brought a lot of good things to the club and I'm quite sure Andy and Steven will pick up on the good bits.”

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