MUSSELBURGH Athletic boss Calvin Shand said he “could not be happier” after his side clinched the East Premier League title.

Burgh went into Saturday’s clash with Dalkeith Thistle needing just a point to guarantee the title and they duly delivered, with second-half goals from Gary Cherrie, Michael Moffat and John McManus securing all three points and the trophy (see match report on Pg 54).

That sparked celebrations at Olive Bank, with players and fans delighted as they picked up the trophy following relegation from the East Superleague 12 months ago.

Shand told Courier Sport: “I’m delighted for the club and for the players, they’ve worked really hard all season and they deserve it.

“I could not be happier.”

Club captain Mathu King, 34, was ecstatic after lifting the trophy.

He told Courier Sport: “I was delighted – it isn’t just for the boys but for all the committee guys as well, everyone does so much in the background. It was a great day in the sunshine. I’ve played almost every game this season; for an old guy it’s been pretty good.”

Shand admitted his side were not at their best during the first half of Saturday’s win, with it taking Burgh more than 70 minutes to break the deadlock.

He was, though, pleased his side got their hands on the trophy at the first available opportunity.

“It was important that we got it done – it was in our hands, it was a home game and a big crowd,” said the 34-year-old. “The performance doesn’t really matter when there’s a league title at stake and it was just great that we got there.”

His veteran skipper agreed, adding: “It’s a results business and the 3-0 flattered us a bit – it was a pretty even game.”

While Shand has previously tasted league glory as a player – he helped Berwick Rangers to the Third Division title in 2006/07 – Saturday saw him clinch his first trophy as a manager.

Reflecting on his two-and-a-half years in charge so far, he said: “I’ve been to two cup semi-finals, been relegated and now won the league.

“It’s been a rollercoaster so far but, apart from the relegation, I’ve loved every minute of it.”

Goalie Ally Adams is joining Berwick Rangers (see story on Pg 55). While Burgh also confirmed that kitman Allan Todd was to move on after five years at Olive Bank.

Shand, who took over in June 2016, praised the club stalwart, adding: “Toddy has been a big help to me – he waits on the players hand and foot and he’ll be a big miss.”

The celebrations rolled into the wee hours of Sunday and, for some, another 24 hours! There were more than a few happy faces when Shand afforded his side an evening off training on Monday.

The Burgh squad are back under Shand’s watchful eye this evening (Thursday) and can reach another landmark this weekend. Musselburgh need only a draw to set a new all-time points record for the East Premier League, while avoiding defeat to Fauldhouse United would see Burgh complete a full season unbeaten at home.

Shand added: “The points record is 70 and we’re on that at the moment, so that’s another incentive for us, and so is being unbeaten at home for a full year. We’re not a club that traditionally has had a great home record so to be unbeaten for a whole season would be a great achievement.”

King agreed, adding: “We’ve got three games to get one point to break the points record, so hopefully we can get over the line.”

Burgh will embark on a new chapter next season as they move into the East of Scotland League, and Shand admitted the club was “entering into the unknown”.

He added: “We’ll sit down and think about that in time but it’s important that we enjoy this [league win] because you don’t know when the next one will be.”