Robbie Neilson adds former Hearts team-mate and ex-Falkirk & Coventry City coach to MK Dons backroom staff



ROBBIE Neilson has added former Hearts team-mate Neil MacFarlane to his backroom team at MK Dons.

MacFarlane has been appointed first-team coach after being in the stand to watch Neilson kick-start his managerial career south of the border with a first win in his league debut against AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.

As well as playing alongside Neilson during his four seasons at Tynecastle, MacFarlane worked with Neilson’s number two, Stevie Crawford, when acting as assistant to Steven Pressley at Falkirk.

With Pressley subsequently taking MacFarlane with him to Coventry City and Fleetwood Town, Neilson is thrilled to have added the 39-year-old to his staff ahead of this evening’s FA Cup replay at home to Charlton Athletic.

He said: “Neil’s got really good experience of the league, having been at both Coventry and Fleetwood as assistant. I just felt I needed that experience, someone I could turn to regarding a number of things.

“Also, Stevie worked with him at Falkirk and I did for a little at Hearts at the start of my coaching career after playing in the same side with him.

“He’s a great character and he works hard – that’s what you need. He’ll be hands on, helping with training and taking certain aspects of it. He’ll be a positive addition.”


MacFarlane, who also played for Queen’s Park, Airdrie, Queen of the South and Morton, began his coaching career in 2011, aged just 33 and had a short spell as Coventry’s caretaker manager last year.

He added on “I’m absolutely delighted. We’ve been talking about it for a week so it’s good to get started.

“I know the manager, having played with him and then worked with him for a while when he was starting out in coaching, while I also worked with Stevie at Falkirk for a number of years.

“We all get on very well and hopefully that can help drive the club forward.

“I’m just looking to come in and offer my experience from my time in England. I’m looking forward to working hard as a group and trying to push the team up the table.”