Lancaster City boss has eyes on sixth spot

Mike Hale is battling a knee problem.
Mike Hale is battling a knee problem.

Lancaster City boss Phil Brown believes finishing sixth will cap a fine season for his side.

The play-offs are out of reach for the Dolly Blues but sitting in seventh place they are just three points behind Clitheroe with two games to play.

Having already reached the final of the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy where they lost on penalties to National League North Chorley Brown thinks finishing sixth would be a “great achievement” for his side.

Brown said: “It’ll be a great achievement, especially given the rebuilding we did at the start.

“We were 16th and 17th then up to 12th, 10th before establishing ourselves in the top eight or nine.

“We even got into the play-offs at one point.

“We’re heading in the right direction and sixth would just cap it all off, especially on the back of a county cup final.

“We want six points from the final two games.”

A fixture quirk sees the Blues end the season with two games against Scarborough and two against New Mills.

Having drawn 1-1 with Scarborough on Saturday and won 3-1 at New Mills on Tuesday night Brown next takes his side to North Yorkshire this weekend.

The City boss said: “We want to finish as high as we can but we know it will be a tough game at Scarborough.

“Anyone who saw them on Saturday will know they’re not the team who started the season. 
“They’re in the league cup final which is testament to that and they’ve got good players.

“Having said that we should have won the game last Saturday.”

New Mills have only picked up two points all season but Brown was impressed with what he saw on Tuesday.

He said: “It was a difficult game on a difficult pitch.

“They battled hard and have some decent players.

“People look at the table and think they must be really poor because they haven’t won but I think the longer the run has gone on the more difficult it has got for them because teams raise their games against them because they don’t want to be the first ones to be beaten.

“I thought New Mills were a credit to themselves though.”

Brown has a few injuries to contend with. Mike Hale is battling a medial knee ligament injury, Billy Akrigg is ruled out for the season with two fractured bones in his foot and Zach Clark has an ankle problem.

Defender Chris Anderson was handed a debut at New Mills with Danny Gregson making his Dolly Blues return from the bench after injury.

There are spaces for supporters on the team coach running to Scarborough leaving at 10am. Call 01524 382238 to book.

The club’s end of season presentation evening takes place at Lancaster Brewery on Friday, April 29. The evening begins at 7.30pm with all supporters welcome.