My son Zak had a battery of questions.

He’s 10 years old and I was barely in the door of our house on Tuesday afternoon when he started to have a go at me.

It took my breath away just how vociferous he was about his thoughts on the breaking news that Angelo Alessio was no longer in charge at Rugby Park.

He’d heard all the whispers, the tittle-tattle and the rumour mill – all of the ingredients that seem to drive the game
these days – going into overdrive about what was happening at Kilmarnock.

Zak wanted to know why I was going to become the new manager of Killie.

Gary Holt attends Killie's match against Motherwell
Gary Holt attends Killie's match against Motherwell

He doesn’t want me anywhere near it and wanted to know why everything had become such a big deal and a drama.

The fact he doesn’t want me to manage his local club – whose crest I have tattooed on my leg to mark winning the
Scottish Cup with them in 1997 – brought a bit of humour to the whole thing.

He said everyone was telling him that I was getting the job and that he was getting pelters off of his mates as he’s a died-in-the-wool Livingston fan.

It’s all down to loyalty.

So I sat him down and said: “Listen pal, I am the manager of Livingston. Don’t believe everything you hear.”

But it really was quite surreal what had happened at Rugby Park and how it has impacted on other people’s lives.

All of the speculation has certainly had an effect on my family, not just me.

Like most people I was shocked by the announcement that Alessio has been dismissed after only 22 games.

Nothing should really surprise you in this game but I was genuinely taken aback by the news that he was away.

The truth is I didn’t really give much thought as to what would happen next.

As a Kilmarnock fan from boy to man, and as a former player and trophy winner with them, I was obviously keen to see who would succeed Angelo.

It wasn’t long before social media and football’s rumour mill cranked up and my name started to trend on Twitter.

I’ve never hidden my love for Killie but it’s one thing in football to have an affiliation to the team you support and another thing completely when it comes to the professional side of the sport.

It wasn’t long before I was having to bat away the questions from the media about my name being linked with the vacancy at Killie.

I understand how these things work, I’ve been around long enough to know it’s the job of the journalists to pose the question and to try to get a line. But I’ve never been one for biting.

The difficulty is that as the manager at any club, if you aren’t being mentioned in the media about jobs that have become available then it should be a concern!

Clearly, if you are in contention for jobs elsewhere then it’s something of a back-handed compliment that you must be doing well at your club.

But there’s also a question of decorum.

Livingston manager Gary Holt during a press conference

First and foremost I am a man of morals.

It just doesn’t sit right with me as manager of Livingston to be talking about another club.

A driving force throughout my life has been the word loyalty.

That’s what I expect from others and what they can expect from me.

It is a simple matter of standing by the people who stand by you, so it’s that lack of politeness which annoys me as a manager when I am asked about another job.

When you are in a position, especially in the industry I am in, I believe it’s so important to be open and honest with both your employers as well as the media.

With the work I am doing and with what the club have got ahead of us, I believe that Livingston fully deserve that bit of decorum which I have been talking about.

I had a situation as Falkirk manager that I was contacted by Norwich City.

I told them straight off the bat that I wasn’t prepared to speak to them until they had spoken to my club.

It was that simple and I proceeded to provide them with the acting chairman Douglas McIntyre’s phone number. I also told them to speak to him and if they could reach an agreement only then could they talk to me.

It was straight down the line, nothing underhand and I called Douglas straight away to let him know what had happened.

Within a few days of that first call I was given permission by Falkirk to talk to Norwich and the rest is history.

Football is a game where actions matter and I would never go behind anyone’s back and speak to another club without explicit permission to do so.

In my eyes that’s exactly how it should be.

My career has always been about striving to be the best I can be and at this moment, all of those ambitions are focused on Livingston.

Getting as high up the league table as we can is all that concerns me until my club tells me otherwise.

And as long as it stays that way then Zak will be happy.

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