AFC Fylde boss Jim Bentley admits he doesn’t want the season to be declared null and void.

The National League is presently on shutdown until April 3, with the Coasters due to return to action the following day at Ebbsfleet United.

Cynics would point out that the season being written off would benefit Bentley’s players, given they sit second-bottom of the National League table, a year on from losing the play-off final against Salford City at Wembley.

However, with nine games remaining they are only four points behind fifth-bottom Wrexham, after putting a winless run of 13 league games behind them with back-to-back wins over Dagenham and Redbridge and Aldershot Town.

Those matches still to be played include games against fellow bottom-four sides Ebbsfleet, Chorley and Maidenhead United.

While survival has to be the aim, considering the club’s stated ambition of EFL football by 2022, Bentley wants it to be achieved by their own merits.

He is a past master at guiding teams up the table late on in a season, having helped Morecambe to preserve their EFL League Two status on an annual basis.

“I would like to play to a conclusion,” Bentley acknowledged.

“I don’t believe we will go down and I think we’re in good form at the minute.”

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