David McGlynn: Right time to quit ‘poisonous’ Linlithgow atmosphere

David McGlynn looks back with fondness at Linlithgow Rose's Scottish Cup run last season. Pic: Michael Gillen
David McGlynn looks back with fondness at Linlithgow Rose's Scottish Cup run last season. Pic: Michael Gillen
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David McGlynn has revealed he left his post as manager of Linlithgow Rose because the expectation levels at the club were too high amid a “poisonous” atmosphere.

The former Musselburgh Athletic boss announced his decision to quit the Prestonfield club after 16 months in charge on Monday night.

He felt a fractious committee was affecting his players on the pitch and he believes they must sort out their off-field 
problems before the club can move forward.

Regarded as one of Junior football’s biggest clubs, Linlithgow haven’t won silverware for three seasons and McGlynn reckons the club is at risk of stagnating with other teams having surpassed them in recent years.

“The time was right,” said McGlynn. “Expectation 
levels are too high and I was just standing and getting criticised for playing young boys. People don’t realise that the money isn’t there – we were after five or so boys in the summer and we never got them, they went to other Junior and Senior clubs.

“If we had got those sort of boys, yes, we would’ve been challenging, but you get what you pay for and we had to go young because of the money side of things.

“Young boys make mistakes. On Saturday we finished the game with five under-23s on the pitch and that’s never been known for Linlithgow Rose. The fascination of Linlithgow Rose is now gone – there are clubs paying more money and with the same, if not better facilities. Until they sort things out off the pitch they will not move forward on it.”

He continued: “The expectation levels are absolutely ridiculous. They were the biggest club in Junior football, now everybody has caught up with them and some have passed them by with the finances they’ve got.

“Every club used to pay the same and they’d go to Linlithgow Rose because they had the best facilities. It was easy to make the decision to go there, but that’s not there anymore.

“The four boys that are there are top, top Junior people [Jim Harkins, Davie Roy, Les Donaldson and Willie Scunion]. They have been absolutely brilliant and credit to them because they work so hard, it’s just unfortunate they are poisonous behind it. There was a committee man behind the dugout on Saturday slaughtering every one of my players.”

McGlynn felt he was at the stage where he was just one loss away from being sacked. Mounting pressure from a section of the Rose support calling for his head online, he believes, has affected the club.

He continued: “It’s a wee bit of a weight off my back going to every game thinking ‘I could be sacked today if I don’t win the game’ and that’s not nice for any manager to have that on their conscience.

“Going into the Bo’ness game somebody came up to me before the game saying there are fans on Pie and Bovril [a fans’ forum] saying they hope we get beat by four or five so I’d get the sack. That’s just wrong that people would actually think like that. They probably know nothing about football – I’ve played at the highest level and I know the game. You don’t get the badges and qualifications that I’ve got without knowing the game.

“If the people who 
supposedly love the club didn’t criticise the club so much they’d be in a better place.

“They think they are Real Madrid, they are playing Junior football, but they think they are better than what they are.

“I’m disappointed that it never worked out, that’s for sure, but there’s a huge weight off my shoulders. There’s not a club in the world that has that apart from Linlithgow Rose.”

Reaching the fifth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup for the first time last season was a momentous achievement for the club. Being the manager which led them against 
Premiership Ross County is something that will live with McGlynn forever.

He added: “We did something last year with a team which was just coming together. The achievement we had last year, to be the first Junior club to reach the fifth round of the Scottish Cup is incredible for a club this size.

“New floodlights are getting put up with that money, which is great and that will live with me for the rest of my life. I went toe-to-toe with Jim 
McIntyre just weeks after them winning the cup and it was great, nobody will ever take that away from me.”

Rose are inviting all applicants for the managerial vacancy to send in a written application and CV to the club secretary Jim Harkins on jharkins@blueyonder.co.uk. Applicants must have at least a C-Licence Qualification and should make application by Wednesday, October 12.