Shire full-back Michael McGowan has announced that he is quitting football in order to take up a new job opportunity on the other side of the world.
He has accepted a one-year secondment from his employer to work in Australia starting in January.
It is an exciting move for McGowan – but a real blow to Shire to lose a player who has been an ever-present since his summer move from Annan Athletic.
“There are mixed emotions for us,” said Shire secretary Tadek Kopszywa. “On the one hand it is a fantastic thing for Michael to be able to move to the other side of the world and experience life in Australia and it is something that he will certainly enjoy.
“But it leaves us with a considerable hole to fill for the remainder of the season.
‘‘However, his departure will provide an opportunity for someone else and I am sure there are players on the bench and returning from injury who will see it as their big chance.” Michael said his farewells to the playing and coaching staff following Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Berwick Rangers.
Shire now face a long trip north to play Elgin City on Saturday without three first ream regulars.
The Borough Briggs side are just one point adrift of Shire.
Michael Bolochoweckyj and David Greenhill are both suspended after picking up red cards during last weekend’s 2-0 defeat at League Two strugglers Berwick.