St Mirren: Ian Murray leaves Dumbarton to be Buddies boss

Ian Murray at St Mirren Park
Murray has targeted a Premiership return

Former Rangers and Hibernian defender Ian Murray has been confirmed as St Mirren manager after leaving Dumbarton.

The Sons will be due compensative of the loss of the 34-year-old, who has agreed a two-year contract.

Gary Teale, who has been in charge of St Mirren since Tommy Craig's dismissal in December, was also on the shortlist.

St Mirren chairman Stewart Gilmour said: "He impressed with his ethos how he wanted to play football, how he wanted to take the club forward."

Murray was on a shortlist of five candidates who were interviewed this week.

Former Ross County manager Derek Adams and Brechin City's Ray McKinnon, who will be announced as Raith Rovers' new manager on Saturday, were among the candidates.

"He's ambitious, he's young, he's got his whole managerial career in front of him," said Gilmour of Murray.

"I thought all the candidates who applied for this job were excellent. We're getting a lot of good young managers coming through.

"Our target has got to be to get out of this league, but when that will happen, time will tell. We have to develop our young players."

Teale, who remains under contract as a player, will take charge of St Mirren for the final match of the season away to Hamilton Academical on Saturday.

"Gary's very disappointed," said Gilmour. "I think in the future he will be a superb manager.

"He has done a superb job for us, but a wee bit of experience somewhere other than St Mirren would have benefited Gary."

Gary Teale
Gary Teale was unable to prevent St Mirren finishing bottom of the Scottish Premiership

Murray took charge at Dumbarton in November 2012, steering them clear of relegation, and led them to a fifth-place finish last season.

They finished seventh at the end of the current campaign and will be one of St Mirren's opponents next term after the Paisley club's relegation from the Scottish Premiership.

Ian Murray, who will be swapping a part-time for a full-time squad, said: "It's a great chance for me, a great opportunity.

"There's improvement to be made here. You look at the facilities, the stadium, the new training centre.

"For a Championship club to have these facilities is very unusual but obviously very welcome.

"We've not set any massive goals at the moment. We need to sit down and plan a whole pre-season, identify targets to get us back in the SPL."

Murray, who won six Scotland caps, played in defence and midfield for Hibernian, Alloa Athletic, Rangers, Norwich City and Brechin City.

He signed a new two-year contract with Dumbarton in May 2014.

St Mirren had insisted that, as Teale had only been given the job until the end of the season, the 36-year-old former Scotland winger would have to compete with outside candidates for the position on a permanent basis.

Teale, who joined St Mirren as a player after leaving Sheffield Wednesday in 2011, had indicated he wanted to continue as manager despite being unable to prevent the Paisley club finishing bottom of the table.

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