Gutted he may have been but Hitchin Town boss Brett Donnelly could also add a positive spin on their relegation.

A 0-0 draw at home to Stourbridge was not enough to cast a magical end to a horrific few months for the Canaries, and even with AFC Sudbury losing, Hitchin finished fourth from bottom of Southern League Premier Division Central.

But Donnelly was approaching it with a glass half-full mentality, believing it could be the perfect chance for a reset and rebirth.

The Comet: Hitchin Town manager Brett Donnelly (right) wants an instant return to the Premier Division. Picture: PETER SHORTHitchin Town manager Brett Donnelly (right) wants an instant return to the Premier Division. Picture: PETER SHORT (Image: Peter Short)

The boss said: "We've got to make changes, we’ve not won at home since October so the team is blatantly not good enough for step three. 

"It might be a blessing, it might be a reset. We drop down and clear the decks, get things how I want it. 

"The club has loads going for it. At Stotfold last year, never played at step four, and trying to get players in was hard. 

"It should be an easier pull this year because as I always say, this is a big club and it could be a sleeping giant. 

"We just need to shoot for the stars and not aim low."

And Donnelly says he will find fun in getting a squad together that will be aiming for an instant return to the division, and maybe even higher. 

"We’ve got to make changes," he said. "I want my team. This is not my team and it's not me making excuses but I need to get lads in that I know will do the job that I ask. 

"Against Stourbridge, the lads did what we've asked and even in adversity, they nearly managed to turn it around and that's the heartbreaking thing. 

"It would have probably been easier to lose 4-0, tossed it off, but we gave it a proper go. 

"It's hard to stomach at the moment, but I've already started speaking to a couple of people, put some feelers out, see what we’ve got. 

"We’ll draw a line through this season and it’s going to be fun building. I loved doing that at Stotfold, loved the fact I could build a new team and start the club on a journey up the leagues again. 

"I want to do the same again here, I want to have a proper go at turning it around. We’ve been a bit stagnant, stuck in a rut, and I want to be the guy that fires us back up the leagues. 

"I want to be looking at step two football within four or five years or so. 

"I’ve said that from the start, we need to be looking high and if we get shot down, we get shot down.  

"What I've seen of the [Premier Central division], you don't need much more. 

"It's a competitive league, and every team seems to have a little bit more than we have, but there's no reason why if we have a good season next year, get a good squad together and get promoted, then we might get that bounce.