NELSON boss Mark Fell believes the promotion structure of the North West Counties League Premier Division needs changing as his fifth-placed side seek to close a 25-point gap to runaway leaders Runcorn Linnets.

The Admirals were 4-0 winners over struggling St Helens Town on Saturday to extend their unbeaten run to seven matches in the league.


But the victory did little to dent the deficit to the top two despite Nelson having four games in hand on the leaders.

Glossop North End are second, 13 points ahead of Fell’s men having played one game fewer, meaning even if the Admirals were to win the four games in hand on the leaders they would still be no higher than third.

It means that 2015 could become a battle for the top four and Fell is calling on league authorities to look into a play-off system.

He said: “I think we need one. I don’t think Runcorn Linnets will be caught. Them, Glossop and 1874 Northwich are spending the most money and will probably finish in the top three.

“But with only one going up we will still have two of them in our league next season. It does make it harder. It makes it harder for a chairman to invest in the second half of the season and it makes harder to keep players, but that is non-league football.

“I am not sure what will happen next season as Padiham, Prescot Cables and Radcliffe could all theoretically come down from the Evo-Stik League and would all need to go into the North West Counties.”

Despite the tall order of winning the league this time around, Fell insists he will not allow complacency to creep into his squad.

“All we can do is keep on winning. We all want to finish as high up the league as we can.

“We had a good win on Saturday and although we have played better we can only beat what is in front of us.

“St Helens were a young side and they are struggling, but we played well in parts.

“We’ve got a big derby game with Colne on Saturday to look forward to now and that will be a really good game between two good sides.”

The clash with Colne has been moved to Saturday from its original Boxing Day schedule to avoid a clash with Burnley’s Premier League meeting with Liverpool.

The reverse fixture in March has also been moved from its original date and will now take place on Friday, March 27 with both teams hoping the switches will lead to bigger crowds.