Derek O’Riordan takes over the reins at Murrayfield Wanderers

Former Edinburgh Accies head coach believes his new club is ready to buld on last season's fifth place finish in National League Three

Derek O’Riordan will take charge of Murrayfield Wanderers next season. Image: ©Fotosport/David Gibson

MURRAYFIELD WANDERERS have appointed Derek O’Riordan as their new head coach, with Caine McIntyre and Ally Chalmers as his assistants.

All three worked together at Edinburgh Accies in recent years, with O’Riordan in the Raeburn Place hot-seat before stepping down last month. The Stockbridge club struggled in their return to the Premiership during the 2018-19 campaign and ultimately finished bottom of the table, but showed great resilience to claim a few significant scalps towards the end of the season.

O’Riordan and McIntyre’s coaching relationship stretches back to their days together at Dunfermline between 2013 and 2015, before switching to Edinburgh Accies. Chalmers was briefly involved at Accies  and is a former stalwart player and club captain with Wanderers.


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It has been a tumultuous period in the long history of Murrayfield Wanderers, with the SRU calling time on their long-standing tenancy in the national stadium campus last year in order to pursue development opportunities on the back pitches which are yet to materialise. Wanderers are now operating out of neighbouring Roseburn Public Park whilst using a room in Murrayfield Ice Rink as their clubhouse.

O’Riordan – who is in the process of competing his UKCC Level 4 coaching qualification – says he has been impressed and inspired by how the club has dealt with this difficult situation.

“From the chats I’ve had with Wandies, they have a lot that they can feel hard done by, and how the club has responded is commendable,” he said. “Despite their challenges off-field, they finished fifth in National Three this season, and I am looking forward to helping the club build the infrastructure around the squad to kick  on and fulfil their ambitions to climb the national leagues. 

“It will be nice to sharpen the tools again and get more hands on with developing players and the team of coaches I have put together.”

Alex Godsmark will continue as the club’s 1st XV captain.

“We are very pleased to have secured the services of this coaching team and we look forward to building on our fifth place in National Three last season whilst continuing to establish ourselves in Roseburn Park,” said a club spokesman.

“The club would like to formally record its thanks to Ian Jeffrey and Mark Bennett, who are both standing down, for their outstanding work last season which has laid the foundations for Derek and the team to build on.”

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David Barnes
About David Barnes 1428 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

3 Comments

  1. Shocking behaviour by the SRU, they could at least help, maybe I’ve missed something but it looks like they just gave Wandies notice, end of story. As a former Edinburgh Wanderers club member from the glory days of Alan Lawson, Bobby Clark, John Douglas, Roger Proudfoot, Ray Megson and co, this is a sad time indeed. Wandies and Accies have always had a close connection, despite strong city rivalry, long may it continue to keep both clubs heads above water and move onwards and upwards. All the best, I always look for your results on Saturday evenings

  2. Well done to Bobby Frazer for all his hard work in securing a very professional and exciting coaching team at Roseburn next Year. In what was the most challenging year in my life Bobby has stepped up and been the best Vice President we could ever hope for and all the credit for last season and reorganisation into this year lies squarely at his door. When building a team around you it’s important to choose wisely and I can only thank my lucky stars I did that. Next season will be my last season as president and with this coaching team and the new committee, I’m looking forward to some great days at Roseburn as the Juggernaut that is Murrayfield Wanderers continues to make history, Davy Young, President, MWFC.

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