Pete Wild praised the work ethic of his team who “gave everything” during their narrow defeat to Stockport County.
A solitary second-half goal was enough to seal the points for the home side after Aston Villa loanee Louie Barry's shot took a significant deflection before finding its way into the net, shortly after the hour mark.
Dave Challinor’s men were gifted another stroke of good fortune in the first half, as Kyle Knoyle was lucky to not see himself dismissed after his high challenge on Courtney Duffus ended the striker’s afternoon.
Despite succumbing to defeat, the Bluebirds' gaffer was pleased with his side’s efforts.
“We knew that it would be a tough test here today. Stockport creates a lot of chances; they create a lot of opportunities to score, but overall, we dealt with them very well. You have to defend well, and goalkeepers have to make big saves on days like this, and all of those boxes were ticked.
“We had enough chances to get something out of the game, but the Stockport win is a fair reflection. Our team has given everything they’ve got and worked so hard.”
He continued: “For all their chances, I never thought that we were under the cosh, or bedded dealing with wave after wave of attacks. I thought we dealt with the day, and how Stockport played really well – I was pleased.”
Wild also had his say on Knoyle’s first-half challenge that forced the premature withdrawal of former Hatters man Duffus.
“I have to mention that they should have been down to ten men after 20 minutes. That’s clear to see and the referee knows that he’s made a mistake; you could tell by the look on his face.
“It’s a red card, we all know it’s a red card, but you need the big decisions to go your way at grounds like this and unfortunately that hasn’t happened today.”
A bit of positive news to come from Edgeley Park was the introduction of youngster Sean Etaluku. The teenage wideman was summoned from the bench after 75 minutes, making his debut in senior football.
Wild was happy with his impact and hopes that the path between the first team and B team can become a well-trodden one.
“Sean [Etaluku] got a chance on the bench today due to Ged’s [Garner] injury, and I thought he took that well.
“That proves to everyone that the B team is not just there for talking about. That proves that the B team is actually there to be used and is for young players to get a chance.
"I want people to look at Barrow and think ‘if I’m good enough, I will get a chance’, and that’s what Sean got today.”
There is no midweek fixture for the Bluebirds until their EFL Trophy campaign begins in September, so we have to wait until the weekend for Barrow’s next bout.
They face League Two new boys, Wrexham next Saturday at the SO Legal Stadium. The Red Dragons were involved in a bizarre outing last time around after drawing 5-5 with Swindon Town having trailed by three at the interval.