Lancaster City boss challenges players to hit top form in title race

Ryan Winder goes for goal against Colne at Giant Axe on Saturday.
Ryan Winder goes for goal against Colne at Giant Axe on Saturday.
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Lancaster City boss Phil Brown has warned his players they will need to find their best form in they are to seal the league title.

The race for promotion in the Evo-Stik First Division North has become a real scrap with both the second-placed Dolly Blues, a point behind with a game in hand, and leaders Farsley dropping points.

City lost 2-1 at home to Colne on Saturday as the play-off chasers won their fifth game in a row but the Celts were held 1-1 by Droylsden.

“We need to stop taking chances,” said Brown, whose side next host second from bottom Goole at Giant Axe on Saturday.

“The players need to make the most of the opportunity they’ve carved out for themselves by being brilliant all season.

“Now we need to see the job through.

“The target was the play-offs but we’re way past that now.

“We’ve got a real chance of winning the league which isn’t an opportunity that comes around every year.

“We need to play like we did in February and over the Christmas period when we went to the top of the league.”

Despite his side’s wobble on Saturday, Brown conceding the Blues were well below their best, he insists the belief is still that the season will end in glory and promotion to the Evo-Stik Premier Division.

“The bigger picture is nothing changed at the weekend,” he said.

“It’s still in our hands and we need to win our game in hand.

“There’s still the same character there, they’re still positive and still confident.

“I’m still confident. They’re still up for it, they just need to show it on Saturday afternoon.”

The destination of the title will be known sooner rather than later.

The game against Goole on Saturday is the first of five in 14 days between now and the end of the season, City travelling to Glossop North End on the final day on April 22.

After this weekend, the Dolly Blues travel to Prescot Cables on Tuesday night, April 11, to play their game in hand.

“You build momentum by winning games.” said Brown.

“We got into Saturday on the front foot.

“We’ve got to win and then go to Prescot and win there which is our game in hand.

“Come the trip to Droylsden (on Saturday, April 15) the picture might be a little clearer.

“But all that’s in my mind at the moment is trying to win every game, starting with Goole.”

Striker Louis Mayers is available after his suspension and Brown could look to bring some players back from dual registrations in a bid to boost his options.