Dolly Blues are the forgotten side of football

Boss Mark Fell believes clubs like Lancaster City have been forgotten about amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Lancaster boss Mark Fell (photo: Tony North)Lancaster boss Mark Fell (photo: Tony North)
Lancaster boss Mark Fell (photo: Tony North)

The Dolly Blues are facing up to the reality that it is unlikely that any more football will be played this season and the entire 2020-21 campaign will be declared null and void.

City ply their trade in the NPL Premier Division – which is step three of the non-league football pyramid.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Steps one and two – the National League and the National League North are considered to be elite level along with the Premier League and the Football League. So clubs like Chorley and

AFC Fylde, who play in the NL North, are continuing to play helped by significant financial help in the shape of Government grants.

For clubs like City who are just one division away from being considered elite, there is a perceived view that they have been left behind.

Talk of government loans and grants to aid clubs from step three to six have so far failed to materialise, says Fell (pictured right)

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“It’s terrible really that clubs at steps three to six have been caught in the crossfire,” said Fell. “We are one step below from being classed as elite football and we have effectively disappeared. We have not been considered at all.

“I wish we were in the National League North because then we would be playing football and receiving £30,000 a month Government bailouts and things would be rosy, but we are not. We are one step below that but the difference between those two levels – the support levels and priority given is huge.”

Despite the bleak future in terms of this season, Fell believes City are robust enough off the pitch to survive.

He said: “We cut our cloth accordingly but we do have overheads in terms of the stadium, but I think we are in a good a position as we can be at the moment but the longer it goes on, the harder it’s going to be for clubs like ourselves and so ideally we would like a resolution.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Fell revealed he has been in regular contact with his squad, although the lack of football has affected them all in different ways.

He added: “Some of our lads are key workers so they have their hands full, but a couple of our players have come out of academies so it’s really difficult for them. People like young Ed Elewa-Ikpakwu – he’s been on asking if he can do fitness work. He’s just come out of being a young pro at Leicester and all he knows is coming in to training every day so it’s tough.