Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Carlisle in need of a lift

Carlisle United’s fans are renowned throughout English football as the heaviest drinking supporters of any football league club. Is it any wonder?

After Michael Knighton’s ball juggling escapades at Old Trafford came to nought, he purchased the Cumbrian club and subsequently claimed that he’d been abducted by aliens.

Goalkeeper Jimmy Glass may have saved Carlisle from relegation to the Conference in 1999, but it was only a temporary reprieve. The Borderers lost their football league status in 2004 after five seasons in the lower reaches of Division 3.

United have enjoyed relative success since their visit to the non-leagues. Two successive promotions propelled them into League 1. Indeed last term the Blues finished fourth, making the play offs, before succumbing to dirty Leeds.

Now, once again, the trajectory is downwards. Hernandez explains the intricacies on ‘Down and Out’. Carlisle could well return to the football league’s basement on Saturday, and whether in celebration or despair, we can be sure their bibulous supporters will turn to the bottle.

1 comment:

O'Neill said...

I worked down on the Cumbrian West Coast from Carlisle for a while and went to a lot of their midweek games (Saturday's were saved strictly for watching a bigger Utd;)).

The club as the only FL club in Cumbria has potentially a very big catchment area for players and supporters, but it has always suffered from the same problem as the IL clubs, ie an enormous amount of their potential supporters are off every saturday to watch the *bigger clubs*- I'd take a bet there would be more cumbrians at St James for a Newcastle match than to watch Carlisle if they were playing at home the same day.

Pity really, I always enjoyed the trips to Brunton (topped with a few pints round the cluster of pubs near the station beforehand), it was trip back to what I imagined football used to be like in the 60s.