Scunthorpe United - National League North

Going into the National League is the football equivalent of going into the gulag in call of duty!

16 of the NL teams have played on the EFL or equivalent, including all the current bottom 4.

I remember being jealous of Scunny’s squad over the years, shocking what’s happened to them.

Guess no team has a divine right to success though.

Very sorry for their fans. A club very much like us in many ways. I hope they can get back soon like Stockport.

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They finished third and fifth in League One in Mantoms two seasons at the club. He only played a few games in the second season, but I would say he is blameless.

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I read the other week that the NL are proposing an extra promotion place, with two automatic and one from the playoffs. They cite the fact that no club promoted from the fifth tier has been relegated in their first season in Div 4 as evidence of the strength of the league. If that does happen, then it will shake things up even more.

Unfortunately, it is the reality of football, that there is more money about than ever, so if we want to stay in Div 4, never mind Div 3, we need owners that are prepared to play that game. Of course there are exceptions to the rule, but on balance, money talks.

Hopefully now, we have owners that recognise this, otherwise our exit from Div 4 will not be in the direction we hope it will be.


Since the 1980s when they introduced automatic promotion? That is remarkable. When you think of all the up/down yoyoing between the other divisions that is interesting.

Is there a parachute payment if you drop out of league 2?

Yes I believe so, but there must have been holes in Scunthorpe’s

It is remarkable, possibly partly as only 2 get relegated from L2 to NL (as opposed to 3 or 4 down in the other EFL divisions) and of those 2 relegation places, it seems each year now there is a basket case of a club that fills one of those 2 spots like Southend and Oldham in the last couple of years and quite possibly Crawley this year.

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It is astonishing.

Since there was 2 up, from 20 years ago, 13 of the winners of the NL are still in the EFL, including Luton, who are doing well in the Championship. In fact, those teams tend to get promotion within a few years. Oddly, 17 of the play-off winners remain, though they are less likely to get promoted.

Of the 24 teams currently in L2, two-thirds of them came up from the NL in the last 20 years. Walsall are in the minority and it will probably be a smaller minority next season if Rochdale go down and the current bottom 4 in L1 come down.

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I had the same thought, that there is often a club that is inexorably on a plummet which they can’t arrest.
There are several “traditional” non league teams in League One, FGR, Morecambe, Burton, Fleetwood, Accrington, as well as Cheltenham and Wycombe, and we can’t be the only fans of traditional league teams who would never have thought those teams would leave them behind. They must be well run clubs.


I seem to remember Burnley staying up on the last game of the season sometime in the early 90s. I remember sitting on the bus back to Town with my Dad after our game (Can’t remember who we played now) and some bloke had a radio on with all the reaction to it on.

I remember my Dad making a big deal about Burnley almost going out the league. I was probably 15 or 16 at the time and didn’t really get what all the fuss was about. Not a massive club but fairly big to be in that kind of position.

I totally agree with an extra promotion place from the National League, but as a Walsall fan now doesn’t seem a very good time for it to happen!

Perhaps a well run club is different to a successful club depending on whether its run for owners or supporter’s.


I would like to advocate a temporary increase of automatic promotion places out of League Two to let’s say thirteen places to give us a chance next season, although I’m not sure that would be enough.


Yeovil are in the relegation zone aswell aren’t they? 10 years ago they were beating Brentford in league one play off and were in the championship for 13/14.

Of course traditionally more of a non league club known for good cup runs but they were still in the league for 20 years or so up to fairly recently.

Looking at what’s coming down it should be a pretty weak league 2 next year. Wrexham will come up and storm the league but can’t say I’m that worried about Morecambe, Accy and Forest Green all getting relegated, a couple of those will probably be battling to stay in the league in two years like Scunny.

So over to Flynny and the top guys to get this club promoted with ease then… :man_facepalming:

I was thinking more along the lines of a bonus promotion place for the team with the most draws.

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It was a bit earlier than that, 1987 which I think was the first season of automatic relegation and promotion. Burnley won on the last day and it was Lincoln who went down.
I know you say they weren’t a massive club but if your dad was born in the 1940s, for instance, he would remember Burnley winning the League, as well as being runners-up in both the League and the F A Cup in the same season. So I suppose it would be a bit like Leeds or Blackburn going into non league for someone born in the 1970s.

I’ve no idea when your dad was born, but if someone was following football in the late 50s and early 60s then Burnley were a big deal.


Yes if you were doing regions for Walsall type clubs I’d say London would be Leyton Orient, Merseyside would be Tranmere, Greater Manchester is take your pick and Rochdale bar winning all their final games are going into non league to join Oldham and North East would be Hartlepool. East Midlands is Notts County.

All those have been relegated to non league within last decade and on average takes 3-4 years to get back into the league.


Swansea were 2 down to Hull on final day of 02/03 season. If they’d lost they’d have gone into non league but came back to win 4-2. Within a decade both teams were playing each other in the premier league, indeed Hull got up to premier league within five years as they made it in 2008.

Despite all the money nowadays the only good thing still is the accessibility in football pyramid so with a bit of money and more foresight you can still rise up the leagues as Wimbledon did in the late 70s/early 80s.

Would be done with football if they ever scrapped relegated from top level.

National league should certainly have three promotion places. Dosen’t their play off system go down to about 8th place?

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