Michael Paton stepped down as player-manager of Brechin City as the Angus side were relegated to the Highland League in May.
However, it took just one heart-to-heart with his replacement Andy Kirk to convince him he still had a future at Glebe Park – as a player.
Paton has excelled since temporarily hanging up his manager’s jacket and pulling on the boots.
He has helped the rejuvenated City side win three-in-a-row for the first time in over four years.
And while he’s not done with coaching forever, he’s happy to take a back seat.
Brechin City announce that Manager Michael Paton and the Club have mutually agreed to end his tenure as Brechin City Manager.
— Brechin City FC (@BrechinCityFC) May 28, 2021
“When I left my role in the summer I had doubts over whether I’d be back at Brechin,” said Paton.
“I still wanted to play but a new manager can have his own plans and ideas. I may not have featured in them.
“But it only took a good chat with the manager to kick any doubts or concerns I had out of the window.
“I still feel I have a lot to offer as a player.
“I’m happy to take on the additional responsibility of guiding some of our younger players.
“Last year was a sore one. It was my first experience of not having any success at a club.
“Everywhere I’ve been has had success in the past – whether it’s winning a league, cups or reaching play-offs but it didn’t happen for us.
“At times it seemed everything that could go wrong, did go wrong.
“We had bad injuries and red cards. Some players were understandably unavailable because their girlfriends and wives were pregnant.
“I didn’t want it to be the end of the story. I wanted the chance to try and get the club back to where it wants to be.
Michael Paton believes the future is bright for Brechin
“Brechin is a fantastic community club. We have seen how ambitious they are with the changes they have made in the summer.
“The chairman is aiming high and has attracted Craig Levein,
“Andy Kirk and a host of experienced players such as Iain Davidson, Garry Wood, David Cox and Jamie Bain here.
“Their plans convinced me this was the right place to be and I hope we can put in the hard work to try and have a celebration at the end of the season.”
City have added youngsters such as Jack Wills, Marc Scott and Max Kucheriavyi to the squad and Paton has high hopes for them.
“Marc is a talented local lad with a real affinity to Brechin,” added Paton. “He scored a fantastic goal against Alloa to make his mark.
“Max is a very promising player with a great left foot and I’m desperate to see him blossom and use this as a stepping stone to greater things.”