Carl Tremarco is determined to help develop the next batch of talented young footballers at Ross County – such as highly-rated Josh Reid.
The former Caley Thistle and Staggies defender, 35, has opted to end his 18-year playing career in exchange for taking on the full-time head of youth position at the Scottish Premiership club.
This decision comes hot on the heels of him being one of 10 first-team players not handed new playing contracts after County’s top-flight status was confirmed.
And now Tremarco, a Scottish Cup winner with Inverness CT in 2015, is spearheading the club’s youth set-up alongside Gordon Duff, the club’s academy and community manager.
The former full-back, who began his career at Tranmere Rovers, is clearly ready for his career in coaching to flourish further, having impressed in this post on a part-time basis.
Playing style of youths will be studied
And if he can find players anywhere close to the quality of left-sided defender Reid, who joined Coventry City in January for a “significant fee” then he’ll be delighted.
He said: “Myself and Gordon will be looking at the structure of the youth and what we want to model it on.
“There have been changes within the academy, as there has been with the first-team. The club have stripped everything back and brought in fresh faces.
“Myself and Gordon will sit down and discuss how we want to work it going forward in terms of playing style and such.
“I am looking forward to discussing how we want the kids to play, really getting down to the nitty-gritty.
“Our main aim is to produce another Josh Reid. We have Adam Mackinnon, who is now in the first-team squad and the likes of Ben Williamson and Matty Wright.
“We just need to keep churning out the kids, with the aim of getting them into the first-team.”
He added: “I’m all or nothing and I will throw everything I’ve got into this and hopefully it will be a success. I will give it my best.”
Tremarco was reluctant to hang up the boots, but that feeling was soothed by the quality of the opportunity put in front of him by County chief executive Steven Ferguson.
He said: “I’m 35 and, although I was maybe getting towards the end of my playing career, physically I knew I was still capable of playing at a good level.
“That was difficult. It took a couple of weeks for me to ponder my decision, but deep down I knew what the outcome would be. I’m thoroughly grateful to Ross County for giving me this opportunity.
“I have been coaching (part-time) for a few years and this is something that will take a bit of getting used to, not being in and around the changing room, but it all comes to an end at some point.
“I’ve had 18 incredible years and I wouldn’t change a minute of it.”
Tremarco, who runs football school The Other Foot Ross-shire for youngsters, will still oversee that on Monday nights, with the potential for the school to be developed further.