Lancaster City boss Mark Fell has challenged his men to continue their recent fine form as they look to edge away from the NPL Premier Division relegation zone.
The Dolly Blues stretched their unbeaten run to four games at the weekend thanks to a 1-0 win over Witton Albion at Giant Axe.
The winning goal arrived late – the 90th minute to be exact – as local lad Paul Dawson marked his debut for his home-town club by slotting home following a goalmouth scramble.
The result saw City move out of the drop zone and they have a great opportunity to go five points clear of danger when they travel to Stafford Rangers this weekend.
Rangers are a place and two points behind Fell’s men and are on the same number of points as third-bottom Mickleover Sports, who face a daunting trip to leaders South Shields this weekend.
The table is still tight with a whole host of clubs still looking nervously over their shoulders. Fell admits his team face a crucial few weeks.
“Coming off the back of a poor Christmas, we have reacted well to that,” said Fell. “We are unbeaten in four – drawn two of them. The draw against Mickleover was probably a fair result but we should have won at Warrington.
“We now have three away games over the next three Saturdays against teams who are all in the relegation mix with us. We have Stafford this weekend, then we have Whitby Town,and then Bamber Bridge.
“If we can get a couple of wins out of those three it could put us top half – that’s how tight the table is.”
After playing on a heavy pitch at the weekend, Fell gave his players a night off from training on Tuesday.
We kept knocking on the door and found a way to win,” said Fell.
On the injury front, Fell is hopeful Steve Williams will be available after coming off against Witton with a slight calf strain. Paul Jarvis should be fit after suffering concussion.
In the NPL West Division, Kendal Town visit Radcliffe and Clitheroe are away to Skelmersdale United.
Burscough host Barnoldswick Town in the NWC Premier Division, while Charnock Richard entertain City of Liverpool.
In the division below, leaders Longridge – who are six points clear – are at home to Atherton LR. Garstang welcome Longridge’s closest challengers Avro to the Riverside.