WEYMOUTH director of football Paul Maitland has announced a shock exit from the Terras with immediate effect.

Maitland, who served Weymouth for eight years on the touchline as coach, assistant-manager and latterly behind the scenes, tendered his resignation to the board earlier today.

In a statement posted on the club's website, Maitland cited "personal and professional" reasoning for his decision.

He said: "I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the players, staff, supporters, directors and managers who I have worked alongside these past eight years. 

"Weymouth FC has been a big part of my life and having arrived as a coach I have left a fan.

"My decision is based on the need for me to redress the balance in my personal and professional life. I leave knowing you are in the best possible hands to take you forward, keep believing in the gaffer and the chairman.

"I wish you all the very best of luck going forward and look forward to returning as a fan one day."

Maitland was crucial in helping secure the signature of current boss Mark Molesley and the Terras' manager paid tribute to the departing Weymouth official.

He said: "Paul was instrumental in me becoming manager of Weymouth and he saw something in me for the job when not many others did.

"We shared a vision, a work ethic and a dream to get this football club back to where it belonged.

"We have shared so many special memories on our journey and we have become the closest of friends and this is why it is very sad for me writing this.

"We are all indebted to all the hard work he has put it in, which most of it goes unnoticed and without it, we wouldn’t be where we are today.

"I will be forever grateful for the opportunity he gave me and I hope to continue to drive this club forward in a way he did.

"I will certainly still be seeking his counsel and live in hope one day he joins back on our journey."

Having accepted Maitland's resignation, Weymouth's board of directors also communicated their thanks.

"The Weymouth FC board of directors would like it put on record our sincere thanks to Paul for all his hard work," they said.

"He has played a major part in where the club is today. His dedication has been first class and he will be sorely missed.

"We wish him well for the future and he will always be welcome at the Bob Lucas Stadium."