End to misery for Stringfellow’s City

In action: joint-player/manager Michael Stringfellow (left) gets stuck in
In action: joint-player/manager Michael Stringfellow (left) gets stuck in
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Michael Stringfellow is confident Lancaster City’s wretched run of form is well and truly behind them.

It was with a degree of relief that Stringfellow, who is the Dolly Blues’ joint player-manager alongside Neil Wainwright, greeted the final whistle last Saturday.

Having suffered five defeats in their past six games in all competitions, City finally registered a victory thanks to a 3-1 away success over Goole AFC in the NPL First Division North.

Stringfellow conceded the win was vital after such a poor run, but he feels that recent results have not been a true reflection of his side’s performances.

He said: “I think it was a much-needed victory.

“But to be honest, we have been playing quite well.

“The only time the lads have let us down was against Ramsbottom at home when we lost 5-0.

“But in the games before, we had created a lot of chances and we just weren’t putting them away.

“So even though we had been on a bad run, we weren’t worried at all.

“We probably did lose a bit of confidence.

“When you’re creating lots of chances and not putting them away, it does knock your confidence. The more chances you miss, you start to think, ‘Here we go again’.

“But myself and Neil have worked hard with the players in training and you reap what you sow.

“Saturday was a good result and it gives us something to build on. We’re looking to get on a good run and try to move up the table.”

The former Morecambe and AFC Fylde defender felt Saturday’s performance was as good as anything City have produced so far this season.

“It was probably our best team performance of the season and it was great to come away with the three points,” he said.

“The most pleasing thing was the way we went about it – we played as a team.

“If somebody went forward, somebody else sat in for them.”

Lancaster have had to contend with the departure of Brazilian striker Rodrigo Branco, who was on loan at the club from League Town side Fleetwood, and Stringfellow admits he has been a big miss.

“Roddy’s gone back to Fleetwood,” he said.

“His contract was up in January and he wanted to go back and fight for a new contract.

“So we thanked him for his effort.

“I think he scored about six goals for us – we have missed him in the last few games.

“But what it does is give somebody else a chance and we’ve brought in Darren Green from Bamber Bridge, and he did really well on Saturday.”

This weekend, City welcome Harrogate Railway Athletic to Giant Axe.

The Rail were the opposition for the new management duo’s first game in charge in early October.

On that occasion, City thrashed Harrogate 4-0 at Station View and Stringfellow is hoping for a similar result tomorrow.

He said: “It was mine and Neil’s first game in charge and we had a great win.

“I think that result will be in the minds of Harrogate and they will be looking to prove a point tomorrow.”

On the injury front, Wainwright himself faces a fitness test tomorrow on a hamstring strain, while goalkeeper Richard Whiteside has pulled his groin.