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David Martindale feels ready to take on Livingston job

Celtic v Livingston – Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership – Celtic Park
(Image credit: Steve Welsh)

David Martindale believes he is ready to step up and become Livingston manager.

The caretaker boss has told directors John Ward and Robert Wilson that he is keen to succeed Gary Holt, who resigned last week.

Martindale was previously assistant to Holt and his predecessors, Kenny Miller and David Hopkin, and moved into a role as head of football operations in the summer.

He has had a major say in recruitment of players and even past managers, and guided Livingston to a 4-0 Betfred Cup win over Ayr on Saturday. He will again take charge in Saturday’s Scottish Premiership clash with Dundee United.

On his talks with the board, Martindale said: “We had a good chat on Monday. After Saturday, they know the players are quite relaxed and we are in no immediate rush.

“If I was considered for the job I would be delighted to take the job but I am also of the opinion that I will do what’s right for the football club. If John and Robert want to go down a different route I am more than happy to do it.

“Whatever is best for the football club I am easy with. If I stay in my current role, if someone else comes in and I have to leave, or I take the manager’s role on, I am more than happy with any of these scenarios.

“There is a process going on upstairs and I have tried to distance myself from it because there’s a wee bit of conflict of interest there now.

“But they know how I feel, I know how they feel and I think we are quite comfortable as a group to take our time and do what’s right for the club rather than make a quick decision.

“They are comfortable knowing that from a football point of view, we are still doing what we did last week, last month, two months ago. Nothing has really changed. We have lost an individual but the process at the club is not going to change. All I am focused on is three points on Saturday.”

Martindale previously turned down the role but feels he is ready to manage in the top flight.

“Personally I have got a lot more experience,” said the former Broxburn assistant manager, who joined Livi in June 2014.

“If we are going back two-and-a-half years when Hoppy left, I hadn’t been involved at any level of Premier League football.

“So when the board offered me the job I didn’t think the time was right for me, but I didn’t think the time was right for the club either.

“Obviously there was a lot of sentiment and emotion maybe played a part in that decision with just getting back-to-back promotions.

“But I now feel I am a lot more capable and my staff are a lot more capable. The structure we have got in place now fits the structure of a Premiership club.

“After a couple of years and putting my ideas and philosophies and also my coaching staff’s ideas and philosophies, and the manager’s ideas and philosophies, we feel we are in a good place.

“I think you are only as good as the staff you have got behind you and I think as a whole the club has progressed year on year.”