Blue Square Bet
Published 14th May 2012
After drawing the first leg 1-1 of their Conference North play-off semi-final at Nuneaton Town, the Lions were beaten by the only goal in extra time in last week’s second leg at Nethermoor.
“It still hurts,” confessed Guiseley’s community director Phil Rogerson, “but maybe not quite as much as last season when we got to the play-off final against AFC Telford United and were within ten minutes of getting into the Conference before losing 3-2. “I would certainly like to think that we would have done it were it not for injuries in those closing minutes.”
As for this season, Rogerson said: “Nuneaton did us for pace but we have had a long season and you have to give credit to Hyde for finishing first.
“They had a long winning run and we couldn’t catch them but it is galling knowing that we were the second best team by eleven points but haven’t been promoted.
“Hyde FC lost out earlier in the FA Trophy than we did and they had the rub of the green with the weather as we were three games behind them at one stage and we had one of our festive games against Harrogate Town called off.
“We also had to play the West Riding County FA Cup final on the Wednesday after a Bank Holiday Monday. It seems as if the fates were against us.”
At least staying in the same division will mean derbies against FC Halifax Town and promoted Bradford Park Avenue next season, as well as games against Kettering Town and Chester FC.
However, looking at the bigger picture, Rogerson knows that there is plenty for Guiseley to be chuffed about.
He said: “If you think where we have come from in the last five or six years, then we have every right to be proud.
“This season, for example, we have had a 26 per cent rise in attendances, which is the biggest in the division.
“I would like to think that that is down to the style of football that we play but also the effect of social media such as Twitter and Face-book.
“Last Sunday morning, Twitter was going mad and it is to our credit that we aren’t just a par-ochial football club.
“We are putting ourselves out there, and we are also moving forward off the pitch as well with our new stand, and there are further plans for next season so that when we do get into the Conference we will be all right.”