The Cliffe Minstermen would like to pass on our commiserations to the true fans of Cheltenham and Tranmere on their relegation to non league. To a man all of our members have been through what you are feeling I can honestly say that you feel your footballing world has collapsed around you.
Football fans can be a tribal bunch, we all have teams that we pretty much despise (l*t*n, b*ry and l**ds), but when it comes down to it, we do respect our fellow fans especially the ones that pay hard earned money to go to games and support their local club.
Getting out of non league is a complete nightmare. The first season you take it on the chin or chins in my case and decide to embrace the non league experience, going to some barmy daft old places and going back to a whole host of former league clubs. It's the next 6 or 7 years that are the killer, if you don't bounce back first time you are in for a lot of purgatory.
Still there is light at the end of the tunnel, you get on the front page of the non league express and are on TV more than you would ever do if you were in the league. Then when you do click into gear and get promoted (I recommend the winning twice at Wembley in a week route) it's like a rebirth of your club.
Joining the league family again means so very much to everyone at the club.
Non league stays with you, it's a scar that has healed but the pain never totally goes away, but you soon move on, playing in the league cup again and the JPT means that normal service has been resumed and of course straight into the first round of the FA Cup is a bonus now not an expectation.
The best advice we can give to Tranmere and Cheltenham fans is to KEEP THE FAITH.