Arthurlie club secretary Jim Hannigan paid tribute to outgoing boss Johnny Millar – despite him being in charge for just a matter of days.

Millar, who turned out for the club as a player, was announced as Craig Palmer’s replacement when he stepped down a fortnight ago after a run of disappointing results that had seen ‘Lie fall into the relegation zone at the bottom of the Premier Division.

The 56-year-old was in the dugout for just one game, a 2-1 defeat against Largs Thistle last Saturday, before revealing in a statement that he “no longer has the drive and hunger required,” and “let his heart rule his head when accepting the job”.

Hannigan admits it was an incredibly brave decision from Millar to step down and insists he will always remain welcome at Dunterlie Park.

Speaking to Barrhead Sport, he said: “He was a wee bit apprehensive when taking the job as he had really retired but he said to leave it with him and he would have a think, he went away and did that and he said he would take it.

“We had the game against Largs on the Saturday and we got beaten – which was very unfortunate because we played well.

“Johnny went home after the game disappointed about the result and he came back in to speak to us shortly after and said he had let his heart rule his head.

“It’s his local team and he had always said if he was going to manage again, it would be for Arthurlie.

“It broke his heart to do it but it was for the good of club and for everyone else.

“He was brave enough to come in and tell us very early that he thinks he made a mistake in taking the job.

“He could have blamed everyone else but he was man enough to come in and we respect that. He is still very highly respected at the club and welcome here.”

Captain Gary Carroll is currently in interim charge, being supported by fellow first-team players Callum Nolan and Lance Pearce, with the management team overseeing Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Kilwinning Rangers before a 2-0 defeat at Pollok on Saturday.

Arthurlie received dozens of applications for the role ahead of Sunday’s deadline with the committee now set to begin the next stage of the process.

Hannigan added: “Gary has a lot of playing time left in his boots yet so he’s just stepping in. We’ll sift through the applications and hopefully come up with the right man.”