MATCH PREVIEW | West v Lancaster City

Tuesday 7 November 2017, Lancashire Challenge Trophy second round
West v Lancaster City
Brookburn Road, M21 8FE
Adults £5, concessions £3, free for under-12s accompanied by an adult

A Lancashire Challenge Trophy quarter-final berth is the prize as NPL Premier Division outfit Lancaster City visit Brookburn Road.

West saw off Nelson by the odd goal in three in the previous round, but face a different proposition entirely in the form of a side that are currently 43 places above them in the league pyramid. The visitors enter the competition at this point.

Steve Settle named an experimental line-up against Nelson, and may choose to shuffle his pack again – however, he will be without Chappy Massamba, who begins a three-match suspension.

At a glance

West v Lancaster
9th Position 12th (NPL Prem)
LLWLL Form (all competitions) LLWWL
13 Played 18
7 Won 7
1 Drawn 6
5 Lost 5
22 Points 27
30 Goals for 30
32 Goals against 25
Tom Bailey (16) Top scorer (all competitions) Craig Carney (6)
West v Lancaster (NWCFL era): No previous meetings

The Dolly Blues

Just over ten years after their darkest hour – administration, finishing bottom of the Conference North with one point and demotion to the NPL Division One North – Lancaster City look to be on the up again. Last season saw them promoted from level 8 for the first time since that demotion, pipping Farsley Celtic (who eventually joined them via the play-offs) to the title by a solitary point, and as things stand they sit comfortably in mid-table as they look to consolidate in the NPL Premier Division.

Under the stewardship of former player Phil Brown, the Dolly Blues went unbeaten in the league until a 2-1 defeat at Ashton United on 12 September and have won seven of 18 games this season. Heavy defeats away to the top two, Altrincham and Warrington Town, last month may have come as something of a reality check, but they are currently seven points off the play-offs with games in hand on many sides above them in the table.

Lancaster have brought the Lancashire Challenge Trophy back to Giant Axe six times, but haven’t tasted success in the competition since 1975. They came agonisingly close to adding a seventh triumph two years ago but lost the final on penalties to Chorley, and last season they fell at the first hurdle, losing 3-0 at Radcliffe Borough.

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