Express & Star

Home factor as Liam McDonald swaps Rushall Olympic for Stourbridge

After a ‘big’ decision to leave Rushall Olympic, Liam McDonald is targeting success with home town club Stourbridge.

Last updated

McDonald left Rushall on Monday after six-and-a-half years and having kept the Pics in the National League North following promotion last season.

The 39-year-old also led Rushall to their third consecutive Walsall Senior Cup title last week and went back-to-back in the Staffordshire Senior Cup, and he feels it is the right time to step away.

“Rushall financially had offered me a fantastic deal, it was not about that,” said McDonald. “The chairman has gone out of his way to keep me at the club, but it was about me and what I want this year.

“I just felt as though I’ve taken the club as far as I can. I don’t want to tarnish the legacy that we’ve left by outstaying my welcome.

“If it was a financial thing, I would’ve left Rushall a number of years ago. There were always better financial options for me, but I’ve been loyal to the club.

“It’s been a whirlwind in the last two seasons, but it’s been hard. The effort that everybody has had to put in has been draining and it is tiring.

“Emotionally and mentally it was tough.

“We’ve gone above and beyond our expectations since we walked through the door, but I think now after a double cup win, and staying up after promotion last year that I was always going to be having those conversations about stepping down to allow someone with fresh ideas to come in.

“I want to be at Stourbridge, and when I was offered the job it was a big decision to think about, and it took over a week to decide. I knew my love for Rushall was so strong, I needed to make sure it was right for me.”

McDonald has signed a two-year contract with his local club Stourbridge, who finished 12th in the Southern Central Premier this season.

The new Glassboys boss is not phased by dropping down a division and is excited to be at the helm.

McDonald said: “Dropping down a league doesn’t scare me.

“I can hopefully stamp my imprint on the club and give them success. That’s the aim.

“It’s a re-build job, and effectively gutting the football club from top to bottom. Culturally, changing the identity to what I think it needs to be and to do that I’m going to need the supporters.

“They’re going to be massively important. I want affiliation with the fans. It’s going to be an exciting journey. We want to get back to that when you play for Stourbridge, it’s a privilege to wear the shirt.

“Has it been over the last five years? Probably not, but next season it will be and the players will wear it with pride because playing for me that’s what you have to do.

“I live in the town. It’s a sleeping giant, and has had a lot of disappointing seasons over a number of years.

“Everybody has gone in and tried to breathe new life into it and it hasn’t worked so I feel with myself and my staff that we can be the ones to do that.

“I’m a supporter, and I have the privilege to stand in the dugout and get results for the town.”