Holders Lancaster City target place in LFA Challenge Trophy final

Holders Lancaster City will look to upset the odds on Wednesday evening when they take on Southport in the semi-finals of the LFA Challenge Trophy.

By Craig Salmon
Tuesday, 8th March 2022, 3:47 pm

The Dolly Blues head to the County Ground, in Leyland, hoping to win through to the final of the competition once again. City were crowned winners of the competition the last time it was played to a conclusion.

Having won through to the final during the 2019-20 campaign, Mark Fell’s men lifted the trophy last August after the competition had been delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

They were able to sweep aside surprise finalists Prestwich Heys, of the North West Counties League, 6-1 in the final.

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Lancaster boss Mark Fell

However, Wednesday night’s last-four encounter is sure to be a much stiffer test against a side, who are in the National League North – the division above City – and gunning for promotion this season.

The Sandgrounders currently lie in a play-off position in the table and Fell knows his Lancaster City will have to be at their best to have any chance of earning the right to face either West Chorlton or Atherton Collieries in the final.

“Southport are flying this season,” said Fell.

“They are a play-off side in the division above, so we will go there as big underdogs.

“I suppose whoever wins the game will then be the favourites to go on and win the competition.

“It’s going to be tough but who knows what kind of team they are going to play.

“Is the Lancashire Trophy at the top of their list of priorities when they are trying to get into the National League?

“But we will approach it in the way that we should do which is that we are the reigning holders of the Trophy, we own it, so we have got to try to defend it.

“We will certainly go into the game as the underdogs with the bookies.

“But we will go into it with the belief that on any given day, we can do the job.

“I have never come up against their manager Liam Watson before although I have spoken to him a few times.

“He is a vastly experienced manager who knows his stuff so it will be a good test for me, for the players to go up against them.”

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