Chromasport United Counties League
Published 20th April 2012
ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Premier Division title rivals Long Buckby moved into the championship driving seat after their midweek win 11-1 at Blackstones which puts Buckby three points behind table toppers Lynn, but with a game in hand and seven ahead on goal difference.
However, it has emerged that Long Buckby’s promotion bid may have hit the buffers as their Station Road ground has not made the grade for promotion according to Football Association sources. Non-League clubs at Step 5 need to pass a ground inspection in order to be promoted to Step 4.
The media office at the FA said: “Unfortunately, Long Buckby were not graded so they do not have a Grade E and are not, therefore, eligible for promotion to Step 4.”
Lynn manager Gary Setchell said of the situation: “We’ve been keeping tabs on it, plus it’s looking likely the Northern League winners aren’t going to go up. Until anyone tells us otherwise, the only thing we can do is concentrate on winning our two remaining games.
“There’s still a week to go and plenty to play for.”
Vice chairman Jonathan Chapman said: “Long Buckby’s ground grading makes no difference to us. If we do finish on 108 points and don’t get promoted I’m sure the FA will look favourably on us.
“We can only do what we can do - win our final two games and that will give us every opportunity to go up.”
Forward Jack Defty (a recurrence of his back problem), defender Stuart Wall (back/groin) and midfielder Rob Hughes (back) are all struggling to be fit.
Setchell said: “They couldn’t train on Tuesday. Wally’s the most doubtful, while Rob did his back in within a minute of coming on at Long Buckby.”
Setchell said his squad has to pick itself up following last weekend`s defeat at Buckby and their rivals’ midweek triumph, starting tomorrow with fifth from bottom Desborough Town at The Walks.
Setchell said: “The players were down on Tuesday - we win together and we lose together,” he said. “The lads have got to rally around the lads who made the mistakes on Saturday. The crowd will be decent and they have been terrific all season.
“We have got to keep our fingers crossed and hope Long Buckby slip up again. We’ve won thirty-three games this season and we have got to make sure we win two more.
“The goal difference will be very difficult to make up - nigh-on impossible - over two games. Long Buckby are seven goals ahead with an extra game. You can’t expect to beat teams by twelve goals, and it’s silly for me here to say ‘we are going to win by ten on Saturday’.
“It’s very disrespectful to the opposition and it doesn’t happen often.
“After the heartbreak of last year when getting 103 points, the UCL record points total is 105 and there’s a chance we will get 108 this season.
“The toughest thing to take is if you look at the other leagues from the Premiership down and most teams are promoted with eighty-odd points.
“To get 211 points out of 240 in two seasons and possibly not win the league is near-enough mathematically impossible, so it’s deflating for the lads. They have given me everything. The only two games we’ve lost have been to Long Buckby.
“We had the replayed game at Boston Town which we drew and we had a tough win at home to Boston, so we hope Long Buckby may slip up there.”