FORMER Scotland international Ian Black is “excited” about playing for his hometown club after signing for Tranent Juniors.

News of Tranent’s capture of the 32-year-old midfielder – who after playing with Tranent Boys Club as a youngster began his career with Blackburn Rovers and also enjoyed spells with Hearts, where he lifted the Scottish Cup in 2012, and Rangers – was confirmed on Friday evening.

Although paperwork meant that Black – who won one Scotland cap, against Australia in 2012 – was unable to make his Belters bow in the derby thrashing dished out by Dunbar United at Foresters Park on Saturday, he is looking forward to the challenge.

Black said: “Playing for my local junior team is something that has excited me for a long time.

“After speaking to the gaffer, his passion and plans for the club, I know I’m making the right choice.

“The game has been good to me and I want to help Tranent achieve their vision. I won’t be coming here to take my foot off the gas.

“I am hungry to be a success a Tranent. There’s no hiding place at your home club and I can’t wait to meet the boys and get started.”

In a statement on the club’s Facebook page, a club spokesman said the Foresters Park outfit were “delighted” to have secured the services of the much-travelled midfielder, who was most recently on the books at Chorley of National League North but who has also had spells with Shrewsbury Town and Blackpool.

The statement added: “Ian is a local lad who has played at the highest level and now feels the time is right to give something back to his local club – at 32 he still has a lot of playing left in him.

“When Max [Christie, Tranent Juniors manager] knew Ian was available he made it clear to the committee he wanted him onboard.”

Black follows in the footsteps of another former Scotland midfielder Kevin Thomson, who had a brief spell at the club last season.

Tranent followers will hope that Black’s association lasts longer than Thomson’s – the ex-Hibs and Rangers man made just two appearances for the club before departing to focus on his academy.

Black could make his debut in another all-East Lothian affair as the Belters visit Musselburgh Athletic next Saturday (January 20).

l Turn to page 46 for a report on Tranent’s defeat to Dunbar on Saturday.