Martin Rennie, second from left
Martin Rennie, second from left

A FORMER Falkirk ballboy has signed up to coach in America’s Major League Soccer league next season and could instil some old Brockville magic at his new club according to his brother.

Martin Rennie (36) from Larbert has been appointed to the top job at Vancouver Whitecaps after a successful spell as a US soccer coach, most recently with Carolina Railhawks.

As a youngster he watched Falkirk stars Richard Cadette and Simon Stainrod and he will be looking for the flair of Falkirk in the 1990s in his new side which plays in the Major League Soccer in the USA and Canada.

“I like to keep possession of the ball,” he said at his unveiling on Tuesday night. “But not for the sake of it, I want to play penetrating attacking football.”

Rennie attended Larbert High and Ladeside Primary but a knee ligament injury put paid to a football playing career.

He turned his attentions to coaching and has worked his way through the American leagues to manage in the country’s top flight and pit his wits against the likes of Thierry Henry and David Beckham next season.

“I’ve always wanted to coach in the MLS,” the father of two said.

“Even growing up in Scotland I knew who the Vancouver Whitecaps were, I had a stickerbook with Peter Beardsley.

“Soccer’s a great game, it is a passion for me and I want to create a fun atmosphere here, but also convey that passion and achieve the success that I have managed in other places.

“These are exciting times for Vancouver with the club about to move into a new stadium and the fanbase I have seen here is terrific.”

His late father, Rev. Cliff Rennie, was minister at Larbert Old Parish church, and Martin’s brother Craig is a former reporter at The Falkirk Herald.

Craig, who now lives in Germany, told Heraldsport: “He was always very competitive, even in other sports like swimming.

“His injury stopped his playing career but he kept involved in football - coaching was the next best thing to playing.

“He’s done really well for himself, and worked his way up the ladder in America - the family are all very proud of him.

“He grew up watching the likes of Richard Cadette and Simon Stainrod - I’m sure he will be looking to add a touch of that team’s flair to his own.”