• Tranmere striker calls it a day at the age of 32 after injury setbacks
  • Named in PFA League Two Team of the Year in the wake of his decision
  • Malky lands new role as boss of Scottish Premiership club Ross County
  • Promises the fans 24/7 commitment as he relishes fresh challenge

OUT WITH A BANG...James Vaughan was voted in PFA League Two team of the Year by his fellow

JAMES VAUGHAN announced his retirement from football at Tranmere Rovers at the age of 32 - then walked into the English Football League Two PFA Team of the Year.

That accolade shows the class and pedigree that the Sport Careers Agency client, the English Premiership's youngest ever goalscorer, will carry into whatever he does next.

A succession of injuries saw Vaughan, who scored 18 goals in 29 games for Rovers this season, make the emotional decision to hang up his boots.

He confessed: ”I've been thinking about it for a few months now and, after the recent injuries, it just feels like now is the right time to move on to the next chapter of my life.

”It was a really difficult decision to make. Coming to Tranmere was perfect for me at this stage of my career and I've loved every minute of it.

”The club, the fans and everyone around the place has treated me incredibly. The hardest part about retiring was knowing I wouldn't be playing for Tranmere next season.”

Vaughan exploded onto the scene as a kid at Everton and scored on his debut against Crystal Palace to overtake even Wayne Rooney's mark and become the English Premiership's youngest ever scorer at the age of 16 years and 271 days.

He made a £2.5m switch to Norwich in May 2011 and also had spells at Huddersfield, Birmingham, Bury, Sunderland, Wigan and Bradford.

This season his scoring exploits helped Tranmere into the Play-Offs but they lost out to eventual winners Morecambe, bossed by his fellow Sport Careers Agency stablemate Derek Adams.

Now James is ready to write the next chapter in what has already been a fascinating football story.

INTERNATIONAL PEDIGREE...Malky Mackay in his days in the Scotland

MALKY MACKAY is looking to the future as the new manager of Scottish Premiership club Ross County.

The 49-year-old Sport Careers Agency client was unveiled as the successor to John Hughes after the club survived a torrid fight against relegation this season.

Mackay's managerial career was rocked when a bitter departure from Cardiff City saw a series of private text messages being made public.

Malky was eventually cleared of any racist, sexist, anti-Semitic or homophobic charges but the story is still fresh in the minds of some County fans.

The former Scottish Football Association (SFA) Performance Director went through education and counselling in the wake of the Cardiff controversy.

And he said: "That was something that was seven eight years ago now, well-documented a variety of times.

"I have nothing to hide there in terms of the whole aspect of it and the interviews I went through for the next three, four years.

"Since then I have worked for another club in Wigan, the Scottish FA and been involved in the governance of the game in Scotland for the next four years.

"I've been asked to be interim manager of the national team, and more recently worked for UEFA and FIFA."

Mackay is operating in a league where this season convicted drug dealer David Martindale's rehabilitation as Livingston manager was rightly lauded and celebrated.

Martindale served four years in prison for his crimes but this season passed an SFA test to be ruled fit to take over as the Head Coach of the Lions.

He then led the West Lothian club to a top six finish and a place in the League Cup Final in one of the season's great stories.

All Mackay asks for is a clean slate and a second chance like the one that Scottish football has afforded to Martindale.

Malky stressed: "I always try to attain to be better every day and I would hope that the people who genuinely know me and have come across me, especially in the last four years in Scottish football, make their own mind up as to who I am.

"What I can tell you is for the good of Ross County I will do everything in my power 24 hours a day to make sure the chairman and chief executive and, more importantly the fans and the community in the Highlands, are actually seeing someone wholly committed to their football club who genuinely wants to make a difference here and help the club improve.

"Judge me on what I say to you, what you see on the pitch and in press conferences. I'm sure in the next few months we'll be going out to talk to fans in Q&As.

"Judge me on the fact I want the very best for this football club and I'll work 24 hours a day to do it.

"The message to the fans? Hold on for the ride ahead."

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