FIRST off I offer no apologies for banging the drum for Rossendale United and the rest of the area’s non-league clubs in the next couple of hundred words.

The Stags were saved from the abyss by taking to the field on Saturday against Winsford and a decent crowd of just over 100 turned out.

That was up on previous crowds – and is encouraging.

But the only way United will prosper is if they are backed by the locals.

People always express sadness when clubs disappear – yet those very people could alter the situation just by going along to the games.

Rossy need the fans through the gates – just as every other non-league club needs the fans through the gates.

Blackburn have no game this weekend. Wouldn’t it be nice if a good few of their fans headed off to a non-league game.

Recently Great Harwood, Haslingden, Darwen and Nelson disappeared. Rossy nearly followed. The people who can stop a repeat are out there. Check out a game when you can. You may be surprised at what you see.

And if you are not, well take heart that your few quid is well received by the club in question.