Long way still to go in battle for the top

Lancaster City boss Phil Brown is looking at the bigger picture when it comes to Saturday's meeting with promotion rivals Farsley Celtic.

Friday, 3rd February 2017, 6:59 am
Phil Brown (Picture: Tony North)

On paper it is another crunch clash, the Dolly Blues having met contenders 
Scarborough, Trafford and Clitheroe in recent weeks with mixed results.

This weekend’s visitors to Giant Axe are six points 
behind top-of-the-table City in fourth, with three games in hand.

The sides may be in direct competition for a place in the NPL Premier Division next season but Brown knows there will be plenty of twists and turns with 15 games to play.

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“I know it’s an old cliche but I’m just looking at each game,” said the Blues boss (pictured).

“Yes it’s another game against a side competing for promotion but while we’ve got to play all these sides, looking at the fixtures, they’ve got to play each other too. After 
playing us, Farsley have got to play Scarborough and there are other games, like Glossop against Clitheroe.

“Everybody has got to play everybody else and we can’t look too far ahead.”

A game at home to Radcliffe Borough follows on Tuesday night, meaning the Dolly Blues have the chance to increase their four-point lead at the summit.

It will be the third game in seven days at Giant Axe after Tuesday night’s 0-0 draw with a Clitheroe side now unbeaten in 15 games.

“You’d like your points tally at home to be better than the one away but at the moment I think it’s very, similar,” Brown said.

“Whether it’s a home game or an away game I’m just looking for us to get something in every one though.

Brown felt his side did enough for all three points last time out but wasn’t too downhearted by picking up just the one.

“On chances created I think it’s two points dropped if I’m honest,” he said.

“But if you look at the wider context it’s a point gained.”

“We had the opportunities to get the goal that would have been the winner but it’s the third game they’ve drawn in a row so maybe it was a bit predictable.

“We’re not downbeat though. They’re 15 unbeaten now so we’ve got to look at the positives.

“It’s another point to the tally and we’re still top of the league which is a nice place to be.”

Captain Ricky Mercer could come back into contention against Farsley after struggling with a calf problem while Tom Kilifin is unavailable due to work commitments.

Last Saturday’s game at Prescot Cables was called off due to a waterlogged pitch.