Irons list starting to form

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IRONS wants to add new faces for next year, but says that will be done within the Ochilview board’s constraints.

“There is no doubt there will be plenty of players available but the trick is to make sure you get the ones you want and you can afford.

“The board has been supportive from day one. And I know they are as keen to improve the situation as I am.”

But he ruled out a spend, spend, spend approach to summer signings, vowing to stay within budget.

“We want to get the right people but it has to be a team we can afford,” said Irons.

He, like most managers, hates this time of the year. Few enjoy the experience of telling players their future lies elsewhere, but he says the experience was a lot worse when he was managing full-time players at Gretna and Morton.

“It doesn’t have quite the same impact on the lives of part-time players,” he said. “When I was at Gretna and Morton, where everyone was full-time, it was people’s livelihoods you were dealing with which made it a lot worse,” he said.

Meanwhile, Irons has revealed he never once doubted his players would get themselves out of trouble.

The Warriors were at one late stage in the season six points adrift of safety and, at that point, it was assumed it would be a straight fight between them and Peterhead to avoid automatic relegation, with the best they could hope for being ninth.

However Irons says that never entered his head at the time.

“At no stage did I ever think we would end up going down,” he said. “Even when we were on a run where we couldn’t buy a result did I worry that we would go down. I always had plenty of belief in the players.”

The Warriors chief says the new campaign will be on the club sooner than people think.

“Our first games are in July, so that means we need to start pre-season training in June. In that respect, it’s not a long break and we need to get things sorted out.”