Ray McKinnon: Greenock Morton appoint former Dundee United boss

Greenock Morton manager Ray McKinnon and chairman Crawford Rae
Ray McKinnon is the first appointment under chairman Crawford Rae

Greenock Morton have confirmed Ray McKinnon as their new manager on a rolling one-year contract.

McKinnon, 47, left the Dundee United manager's job in October and previously had spells in charge of Raith Rovers and Brechin City.

He led both Rovers and United into the Scottish Premiership play-offs but could not get either side promoted.

"I feel refreshed, I feel energised and I feel motivated," said McKinnon after replacing Jim Duffy.

Duffy, 59, parted with Morton at the end of the season, with the side finishing seventh in the Championship.

Duffy guided Morton to the Premiership play-off quarter-finals in season 2016-17, when they lost on aggregate to McKinnon's United.

The Tangerines would go on to reach the final but lost narrowly to Hamilton Academical and McKinnon was sacked when United were fourth in this season's Championship, five points behind leaders St Mirren.

As a player, McKinnon played in his native Scotland as well as in England and Northern Ireland, including spells at United, Aberdeen and Nottingham Forest.

His first games in charge of Morton will be the Cappielow club's Scottish League Cup first-round group games against Albion Rovers, Ayr United, Partick Thistle and Stenhousemuir in July.

McKinnon said: "After speaking to Crawford and the rest of the guys, it's a challenge I am really looking forward to.

"The target for the season ahead is to build a competitive team as it's going to be a competitive league and to finish as high as we possibly can."

Chairman Crawford Rae said McKinnon was the "standout" candidate.

He said: "We have a three-year target and we would like to try our very best to bring top flight football back to the people of Inverclyde. When we interviewed Ray he was the absolute standout. He shared the vision that we have for the club."

Jim Duffy, 59, parted with Morton at the end of the season, with the side finishing seventh in the Championship.