BARROW AFC chairman Paul Hornby believes the club are ready to take the next step under new head coach Stephen Clemence.

Hornby is the first to admit that the ways things ended with former manager Pete Wild was far from ideal.

But Wild’s departure has allowed the club to move in a different direction says Hornby.

Speaking to BBC Radio Cumbria, Hornby addressed the criticism that the club has received following the parting of the ways with Wild, but believes people will see they still have the Bluebirds best interests at heart.

“Yeah we’ve taken some short-term fire in terms of what’s been assumed etc (with Hornby clearly stating the former boss had not been sacked).

“But I think once the emotion goes and once the dust settles, we’ve set this club for the long-term benefit in terms of what we got out of the process.”

Hornby says that Wild had helped the club to enjoy two good seasons during his time as manager, but was quick to point out that it was no one-man band.

He added: “People said that Pete’s tenure has been really good, and it has, but it has also coincided with Ian Wood’s tenure.

“You know Iain Wood’s brought the players in, Iain Wood’s been responsible in terms of player welfare. He’s worked his socks off every summer, and he’s working his socks off this summer.

“In terms of creating an atmosphere at training and the camaraderie that’s all him, so I think he needs to take immense credit for what he has done there.”

Now the Bluebirds are looking to the future under Clemence.

And Hornby acknowledges that future can be an exciting one thanks to the where they find themselves now compared to the start of the journey.

He said: “When we had two years at the bottom of the EFL (before Wild’s arrival) we were never going to attract players who wanted to play football, and who wanted to be at the top of the game.

“We had to bring players in who had maybe struggled in other places and who maybe were taking a chance coming to the football league and go and start that journey.

“And then once we got higher up in the EFL, we could bring players in who want to play football, who want to have promotions.

“You can’t do that all at once unless you start paying silly money.

“You’ve got to go through the process.

“And now under Stephen we are excited and looking forward to the next step on that journey.”