Fraser Bremner says he is devastated after his sacking as manager of Rothes.
Bremner was dismissed by the Speysiders on Wed-nesday after joining from junior outfit Dufftown last October.
Although Rothes finished bottom of the Highland League last season, Bremner had overseen an improvement at Mackessack Park this term, with the Moray side in 15th place with 17 points from their opening 21 games.
The former Elgin City and Forres Mechanics midfielder says he was stunned by the club’s decision given the progress he felt he had made.
Bremner said: “I was devastated to be told I was sacked. I was incredibly proud to be manager of Rothes and proud to manage in the Highland League.
“The chairman told me on Monday he had no confidence in me as a manager and didn’t think I was the man to take Rothes forward. I knew the writing was on the wall for me from there.
“It can’t be any football reasons – the statistics are there in black and white. It must be they were just looking for a change.
“When I took over more than a year ago Rothes were statistically the worst team in British football.
“We had six or seven signed players and were on zero points – we had played 19 and lost 19.
“We have already assembled 17 points this season, which is more than the club has had in the previous five full seasons.
“We were in a sticky patch but, overall, the club was showing very good progress. I’m immensely proud of what I’ve done. In a year to 18 months, if the new manager adds a couple of players to that squad, the group will just get better and better.”
Bremner says he will take time before deciding on his next move and added: “I was highly ambitious but maybe this has knocked that a wee bit. It has left a bitter taste in my mouth. I’ll celebrate Christmas with my family then think about where I want to go after the new year.”
Chairman Iain Paul claimed recent heavy defeats, including Saturday’s 5-0 defeat by Deveronvale, prompted the club to dismiss the 31-year-old.
Paul said: “The board wishes to place on record its thanks to Fraser for his contribution in helping stabilise the club over the past 14 months.
“Over this period, with increased investment, Fraser virtually rebuilt the team and helped bring improvement in both performance and points in the first half of this season.
“Since then we have suffered several heavy defeats and have found ourselves dropping down the league again with results well below our expectations.
“With the club having demonstrated continuous improvement off the park since August 2015, after considerable local support and investment, the board decided that a management change was needed to achieve our long-term targets on the park in line with our five-year plan.”
Head of football Derek Thomson will be in charge for tonight’s match against Fraserburgh. He will be assisted by Bremner’s player-assistant Nathan Sharp until a new manager is found.