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Tommy Moller-Neilsen
"I am happy about the decision I have made."
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Wednesday, 10 May, 2000, 17:12 GMT 18:12 UK
Dons' number two departs
Tommy Moller-Neilsen is to leave Pittodrie
Aberdeen assistant manager Tommy Moller-Neilsen is to leave the club in the hope of becoming a manager in his own right.

The Dane has missed much of the latter part of the season after a bout of appendicitis and a burst blood vessel in his back.

The 36-year-old joined compatriot Ebbe Skovdahl at Pittodrie in the summer.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the Dons and I wish the club all the best for the future.

Tommy Moller-Neilsen
Moller-Neilsen stressed that reports of behind the scenes disagreements between the pair are untrue.

He told BBC Scotland: "The working relationship was OK - there was no problem.

"I think it is the right decision for me to go now - I may have a couple of chances to go somewhere else.

"It also gives Aberdeen time to find another man, and I'm happy about the decision I've made."

Israeli offer

The former Rangers coach was released from hospital at the weekend and is currently recovering at home.

He collapsed on 18 April at the Dons' match with Dundee after suffering a burst blood vessel.

That has prompted him to consider his future with the club, despite having turned down an offer to become assistant coach of the Israeli national team recently.

His father, Richard Moller-Neilsen, is the Israeli manager, but Moller-Neilsen junior pledged his future to the Dons despite their lowly SPL status.

Ebbe Skovdahl
Ebbe Skovdahl: Reports of rows
But following his latest decision, Moller-Nielsen said: "It's been a frustrating time for myself and my family over the past few months.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the Dons, have made many friends and I wish the club all the very best for the future."

Chairman Stewart Milne was disappointed to lose Moller-Nielsen, but paid him a glowing tribute for the job he had done in the north east.

"We are sorry to see Tommy go but respect his decision," Milne said.

"On behalf of everyone at Pittodrie, I would like to thank Tommy for his contribution over the past 11 months."

Possible successors

It had also been thought Moller-Neilsen would eventually become Skovdahl's successor at Pittodrie.

But now the Dons must look elsewhere, with soon-to-be-jobless Jocky Scott one of the names being mentioned.

Scott, whose contract at Dundee is not being renewed, has already worked in a managerial role at Pittodrie and may be tempted back.

Under-21 and youth team coach Gardner Spiers will step into Moller-Neilsen's place until the end of the season and for the Scottish Cup final.

The club said a decision on a full-time replacement would be taken in the close season.

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See also:

09 May 00 | Scottish Premier
Aberdeen boss denies rift
10 Jan 00 | Scotland
Directors repel Dons board attempt
30 Nov 99 | Scotland
Dons 'preparing for the drop'
19 Oct 99 | Scottish Premier
Aberdeen boss: 'I stay'
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