Boss Mark Weir delighted as midfield ace joins Carluke Rovers after turning down new deal at Premiership Livingston

In a major endorsement of the fine negotiating skills of Carluke Rovers boss Mark Weir and assistant Kenny Neill, the club has signed midfielder Marc Smith, 20, whom Premiership outfit Livingston wanted to retain.

Mark Weir (right) and his assistant Kenny Neill have boosted their squad with the signing of Marc Smith (Pic by Kevin Ramage)

"Marc is very highly rated and it’s massive for us to get him,” Weir said. “Livingston wanted to re-sign him and Queen of the South were looking at him as well and he spoke to them.

“Obviously myself and Kenny must have been doing something right to get him to want to stay with Carluke Rovers

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"Marc had fallen out of love with football and I was able to bring him on board, get him back involved and he was willing to sign for the season.

"He just wanted to get back playing and enjoying his football again and with some of his performances so far, he’s enjoying it.

“Marc plays in central midfield and I think he’ll only get better playing alongside Gary Fleming.

"I’ve told Marc that I won’t stand in his way if midway through the season a bigger club than Carluke Rovers comes in for him. I will let him go no problem.

"There’s no reason why he can’t go back to an SPL club and produce what he’s given me so far.”

Smith has impressed as a triallist in recent Rovers friendlies, so Weir is delighted to get the deal done.

“He’s got a good engine, he can see a pass. For a kid so young he’s just on a different level,” the gaffer added.

Rovers’ scheduled home friendly against Kilsyth Rangers last Saturday was postponed, but the John Cumming Stadium men are due to play a friendly at Caledonian Braves under-23s tonight (Tuesday).

“Kilsyth didn’t contact us about it until the Friday night so it was a bit late to try and organise another game,” Weir said.

"I heard that one of their guys had tested positive for Covid at training which meant that seven or eight of them had to then self isolate.

"So it wasn’t ideal but thankfully I had already arranged the friendly against Caledonian Braves to get the boys some game time.”

Rovers play Mid Annandale in an away friendly this Saturday.