Barry Smith maintains full belief Elgin City have the foundations in place to avoid relegation danger this season.
Smith left his role as manager earlier this week, due to increased work commitments in his day job for a safety equipment supplying company.
After replacing Ross Draper in the post in September, Smith took charge of just eight matches during a short-lived two month spell.
Draper, who has remained at Borough Briggs as a player-coach, will now go back into interim charge of the side as the search for a permanent successor picks up.
Smith bowed out on a high, after defeating Bonnyrigg Rose 2-0 on Saturday to move off the foot of the League Two table.
He believes City’s current playing squad, with the help of some fine-tuning in the January transfer window, has what it takes to stay off the bottom of the league.
Smith said: “The players at Elgin have been excellent, in terms of taking on board what I have wanted.
“We have a great record at home. I have full belief that, if circumstances were different and I was able to stay, we would most definitely stay up.
“There is enough in the dressing room. Hopefully come January, the new manager is allowed to bring players in, and strengthen the squad to build a team around what is already there.
“For me, the basis of it is there. The players that are there just need a bit of help.”
Young players developing at Borough Briggs
City’s squad contains five loan players, with Ryan MacLeman, Connall Ewan and Matthew Wright on loan from Ross County, while Blair McKenzie and Liam Harvey having been farmed out by Aberdeen.
Smith has been encouraged by the learnings they have taken on board during his short period in charge.
He added: “The young ones are here to learn. Five young ones is a lot I think, and the majority were playing.
“They are going to make mistakes – which is why they get sent out on loan. What we’ve got to accept is they make the mistakes, but to try and help them to understand how not to make the mistake.
“They are also here to win. We want to win games, but while you are learning sometimes that can be difficult.
“In no shape or form is it down to the young ones, it’s a team game. We take credit when we win games, and everybody takes responsibility when we lose them as well.”
Smith reflects fondly on short Elgin stint
Dundee-based Smith felt the decision was a difficult but necessary one, given the impact his recently-changed work schedule would have on his commitment to the role.
He added: “It’s a tough decision, becauase I have enjoyed my time at Elgin. I’ve had great support from the chairman, and the fans.
“I think they understand the squad I inherited was a squad which had good individual players.
“Actually trying to get a team that fitted that squad out on the pitch was difficult, which I have put on record before.
“The fans were fully supportive.
“There have been a few bad results, which I take responsibility for, but I still had the fans’ support.
“For as much as I had a couple of bad results, I have taken seven out of nine points at home.
“As much as you take responsibility for the bad ones, you’ve got to get a wee bit of credit for the good ones as well.
“The support I got from the fans on Saturday made it a really tough decision.
“But going forward, knowing the squad that’s there until January, it needed someone that could give it full attention and be there when needed.
“I couldn’t do that, just given my work schedule changing. I felt that was the honest thing to do.”