A FAMILIAR face will be returning to the Valefield Park dugout this weekend.

It comes after Tommy Molloy resigned as Kilbirnie Ladeside manager following Saturday's disappointing Scottish Junior Cup exit to Bellshill Athletic.

Replacing the departing manager will be his former co-boss Shaun Dillon - who returns to the club after a short spell coaching arch rivals Beith Juniors.

He will bring with him two members of coaching staff, with one face very recognisable amongst Scottish football fans - former Kilmarnock, Dundee, St Mirren and Partick Thistle midfielder Gary Harkins.

The ex-Celtic youth prospect has spent time as a player/coach since his initial retirement from football in 2020 - in particular with Forfar Athletic.

Now, alongside Robert Scott, he will assume a role in the management team alongside Dillon.

Ladeside have also confirmed that goalkeeping coach Alan Kerr and physio Lesley Paterson will remain at the club from the previous regime.

The manager's role became vacant after Tommy Molloy resigned from the position on Saturday, December 3. It was a resignation Kilbirnie accepted.

He left the club alongside coaches Owen Archdeacon junior and senior.

It followed a shock Scottish Junior Cup exit to Bellshill Athletic. Ladeside led the side who are struggling two divisions below them by two goals to nil at half time. However, a second half fightback levelled the match, before the Lanarkshire side progressed, winning 2-1 on penalties.

It brought to an end a turbulent 15 months at the helm - which included some memorable highs and almighty lows.

Despite a resurgence in form when the former Greenock Juniors boss arrived in August 2021, Kilbirnie Ladeside suffered relegation from the WoSFL Premier League last season.

While they have challenged at the top of the new Division One this year, as they look to return to the top flight at the first time of asking, their form has wavered at times

They have also faced struggles off the pitch.

The club have encountered many fines, alongside fan stadium bans and lost sponsorships making Molloy's job all the more challenging.

However, these challenges are something the club's new boss will be rather familiar with.

When Tommy Molloy first took on the job at Kilbirnie, it was as co-boss alongside his Greenock assistant of four years, Dillon.

It was not until May of this year that Dillon departed the club due to "the challenges around co-manager arrangements for both parties".

Dillon would later pick up a role as coach at Beith Juniors, where he has worked for the last five months.

Beith thanked him for his contribution upon his departure yesterday, December 5.

Shaun Dillon will take over with Kilbirnie Ladeside currently in fourth place in the WoSFL Division One - though teams below do have games in hand.

His first game in solo charge will come tomorrow, December 7, when Ladeside travel to the Hamish B. Allan Stadium to face Rutherglen Glencairn.