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Former Jags boss Ritchie returns to head football development

By Niall Harkiss

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Brian Ritchie joins Strathspey Thistle after several years with Clachnacuddin. Photo: Noremacpix
Brian Ritchie joins Strathspey Thistle after several years with Clachnacuddin. Photo: Noremacpix

FORMER Jags boss Brian Ritchie has returned to the club as part of a reshaping of the club’s key football roles.

Ritchie, who was manager of Strathspey Thistle from 2011 to 2013, has been confirmed as the club’s new Head of Football Development.

Carrbridge based Ritchie returns after three seasons with Clachnacuddin as their Under 20 team manager.

Many of Ritchie’s young charges from his time at Grant Street are now plying their trade at Seafield Park, such as Jack Davison, Jack Wardrop, Jordan Shaw and most recent signing James Fraser.

His appointment was confirmed on June 9.

Vice president Ian Anderson said: “We are delighted to get Brian back involved with the club again. His knowledge and passion for the game is second to none, he will be a great asset to us.

“His role will be to oversee all footballing activities at the club working closely with Charlie.”

In recent seasons, nearby clubs Clachnacuddin and Nairn County have entered second string squads into the North Caledonian League in a bid to develop younger players for their first team.

Ritchie’s work at Clachnacuddin specifically involved the development of their Under 20 squad, the foundations of which led to the establishment of the Inverness club’s reserve side.

Jags vice Anderson would not be drawn on whether Ritchie’s involvement could lead to a similar move for the Grantown club.

“We will be looking to set out what we intend to do in the very near future. With Brian just in to the role this week, we need to let the dust settle and move forward from there.”

The new head of football development is keen to start engaging the local community in a bid to benefit the club.

“I hope to bring the experiences I gained from my previous spell with the club, and from a very enjoyable and rewarding three years looking after Clachnacuddin Under 20 squad, and in turn see the benefit of this bringing Strathspey Thistle forward.

“The work has already started in linking with local welfare football clubs and discussions are underway on how we can all bring as much positivity to Seafield Park as possible.”

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