Having worked alongside two of the division’s most esteemed managers, new Barnoldswick Town boss Danny Craig feels that he’s more than ready to take the next step in his career.
Stewart Airdrie’s successor at the Silentnight Stadium has gained invaluable experience from working with the late Nigel Coates and Steve Wilkes during his time in the game and he feels that input will be hugely beneficial.
Craig had a spell as Padiham’s second in command at the Arbories and was head of youth development with Colne FC at the XLCR Stadium.
“I’m excited by the challenge,” he said. “I feel like I’ve done my apprenticeship and now I’m ready to step up.
“I’ve worked under Steve Wilkes and the late Nigel Coates and they’ll have close to 1,000 games each in management.
“I’ve been working in academy football but always wanted the opportunity to go in to management.”
The former Clarets academy coach will work alongside assistant Paul Cruz and goalkeeping coach Steven Petty and it’s a unit that he has complete trust in.
“I’ve know Paul Cruz very well and we’ll work on this project closely together,” he said. “I played with him for Barrowford Celtic under 11s so I’ve known him for most of my life. I know him and trust him.”
Craig faces somewhat of a daunting task in the early stages of his tenure as Town face four of the Hallmark Security Division’s top seven in the coming weeks.
Town are away at Runcorn Linnets tomorrow and then face AFC Liverpool, 1874 Northwich and Atherton Collieries in the aftermath.
“We were having a laugh about those first six games in the meeting,” said Craig. “It’s definitely a tough run of games against some of the best teams in the league but these are the games where I’ll learn something about my players.
“Games like these tell you what is in their head, heart and feet. Some will see it as a baptism of fire but it will tell me what I need to know about every aspect of this squad.”