Airdrie steps down at Town as Criag takes up the reins

Barnoldswick Town have announced Danny Craig as the new man at the helm at the Silentnight Stadium after Stewart Airdrie stepped down from his position.

Thursday, 12th January 2017, 10:47 am
Updated Thursday, 12th January 2017, 10:51 am
Barnoldswick Town FC manager Stewart Airdrie is pictured with Anne Wolfenden of Cloud 1990. (S)

Airdrie took charge of his final training session on Wednesday evening with the 1-1 draw against Maine Road on home soil, where Zack Dale cancelled out Connor Hughes’s opener, proving to be his last game in charge.

The parting boss has seen the club rise from mid-table obscurity in the West Lancashire League as a player to the Hallmark Security Premier Division.

Airdrie will move away from the playing side of the process but will remain heavily involved at the club, helping to drive it forward on a commercial front.

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“It’s been in the pipeline for a while,” he said. “Things have gone a little bit stale off the field and we’re struggling for volunteers and sponsorship.

“It’s been tough trying to get people involved so I’ll be trying to drum up a bit of support. I’ll concentrate on the commercial side of it now and I couldn’t do that while being the manager.”

He added: “I’ve always wanted to help out because I want to try and push this club forward. We’ll be trying to get people on board with new ideas that will hopefully benefit the club massively.

“We need more interest and help to push us on. I’ll still be heavily involved, it’ll just be in a different capacity.”

Craig, who is working towards his UEFA A Licence, comes in to the role with a wealth of experience having previously been assistant manager at Padiham as well as head of youth development at Colne and Burnley FC’s Academy. Paul Cruz will continue to work with Danny, alongside goalkeeping coach Steven Petty.

Craig will have something of a baptism of fire as Town take on five of the top seven teams in the Hallmark Security Premier Division in their next cluster of fixtures, beginning with title-chasing Runcorn Town tomorrow at the Pavilions Stadium.

Town then take on Runcorn Linnets, AFC Liverpool, 1874 Northwich and Atherton Collieries, with three of the five games away being away from the Silentnight Stadium.

“We know Danny because he’s done some scouting for the club before,” Airdrie said. “He’s really bought in to what we’re trying to do here and taken on the challenge. Hopefully he can be the man to drive the club forward on the playing side.”