Hamilton Academical: Allan Maitland says new boss needs to bring 'flair'

Hamilton Accies players looking dejected after own goal
Hamilton have lost seven of their last eight Premiership matches, leaving them 10th in the table

Hamilton Academical chairman Allan Maitland hopes to have a new manager in place by this weekend after shortening a vast list to "four or five" options.

The South Lanarkshire club parted company with Martin Canning by mutual agreement on Tuesday after picking up just one point in eight league games.

Maitland told BBC Scotland he wants someone with experience of Scottish football who can bring "flair".

"I want us to play to win games as opposed to not lose games," he said.

"There's been an element of that recently. It's important for supporters who come and watch to see a team with a bit of flair.

"And I want to find a pathway for kids coming through to play in the first team."

Maitland, who took over in December, said he has heard from the "usual suspects" and that "there's been a lot of really interesting names put forward".

Allan McGonigal has also been confirmed as Accies' new director of football, in charge of recruitment and supporting the head coach.

"We've changed the structure to give them as much support as we possibly can by looking at recruitment and what they might need," Maitland explained.

Accies have released striker Rakish Bingham and winger Sam Kelly in the wake of Canning's departure, with Kieran Monlouis, Adam Douglas and Alex Garcia - none of whom played a senior game - also leaving New Douglas Park.

'I've nothing but respect for Martin'

Hamilton chairman Allan Maitland
Allan Maitland has initiated a change to the club's coaching structure

"Martin's had a tough gig here," stated Maitland. "We both felt the time was right for a change. We've been struggling with results for a while so we both felt there was a need for a bit of freshness so, with great disappointment and reluctance, it was a mutual decision that it was time to move on."

The club's chair added the verbal abuse Canning, 37, has endured of late was not helping anyone.

"He doesn't need that; there's a negativity around the club pointed to him and when I spoke to him about it he felt quite down about the whole thing."

Hamilton sit 10th in the Premiership, just two points above bottom side St Mirren and one above Dundee, who they host on Saturday in what Maitland concedes is a "vital" game in their battle to prolong their stay in the top flight.

"Results matter to everybody and we would like to stay in the Premiership," Maitland said. "Without that change we both felt that would be difficult.

"Martin's had 10 and a half years with the club as a player and manager, a great record at the club and kept us in the Premiership, so I've nothing but respect for Martin."

Coaches Guillaume Beuzelin and George Cairns are in temporary charge of first-team affairs, but both have been ruled out of landing the role permanently.

Former Hamilton boss Martin Canning
Canning took over in 2015 but Hamilton's 3-0 loss to Celtic proved to be his final game in charge

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