MANAGER Kevin McDonald has left Musselburgh Athletic to take on an assistant manager role with Kelty Hearts.

McDonald, who formerly captained Burgh as a player, had been full-time manager at the club since March 2019 after previously being assistant to Calvin Shand.

However, Musselburgh have now announced that he has left the club to take up a post at Kelty, who have just been promoted to Scottish League Two for the first time in their history.

A lengthy post on Musselburgh Athletic's Facebook page paid tribute to McDonald and thanked him for his efforts with the club.

It states: "He’s built squads that have gone from strength to strength, challenging in the top halves of leagues, made it to three cup finals, two of which we were victorious, and also placed his name in the Burgh history books, being the first manager to take us into the big Scottish Cup.

"Unfortunately for us, as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end and, after five years of management, we are gutted to announce he is leaving the club as he takes up the assistant manager role under brother-in-law Kevin Thomson at Kelty Hearts.

"Geordie goes with the bestest of wishes from the full committee and playing squad, and for all we are saddened to see him go, we are delighted he is getting the chance to prove himself in the higher leagues with Kelty.

"It’s a day we all knew would come at some point in his career, given how fantastic a manager he has been for us.

"The professional manner in which Geordie has conducted himself since making the decision to leave the club just shows how great a guy he really is.

"He met with Karl [Cleghorn, club chairman] on Thursday night before meeting with the players at training to thank them all for their hard work, in particular to those who have been with him over the past five years through the highs and the lows. He finished the evening by organising a Zoom meeting with the committee where he thanked everyone for all the help and support over the years."

The sentiments were echoed by Burgh fans, with many thanking McDonald on Facebook and Twitter and wishing him well with Kelty.

Musselburgh had been in fourth position in the East of Scotland League Premier Division when the 2020/21 season was cancelled.