The lure of full-time football and the challenge of revitalising Raith Rovers ensured a switch to Stark’s Park was too good to turn down for new manager Barry Smith.
The 43-year-old was yesterday confirmed as John Hughes’ successor in Kirkcaldy, signing a two-year deal to join the club from East Fife.
It completes a remarkable journey for former Dundee, Alloa and Aldershot Town manager Smith, who was working as a journalist with the Dundee Evening Telegraph 12 months ago before taking the reins at Bayview in December.
After narrowly missing out on a place in the League 1 play-offs in his 23 matches in charge of the Methil men, Smith has now achieved his ambition to return to full-time football, with Rovers tasking him with rebuilding from the ashes of an ignominious relegation from the Championship.
“My objective was always to get back into full-time football,” said Smith.
“I’m very grateful to East Fife for giving me the opportunity to get back into the dugout but they knew from the very start my objective was to return to full-time football.
“If that chance came up then I was always going to look at it.
“I’m here to stabilise the club and be positive. What has gone is gone, it’s about what we can do in the future. That’s all I can look after.
“I think promotion will be expected, that is natural after being in the Cham-pionship for so long.”