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Quality of National League teams compared to L2

hlane17

Joined
Aug 10, 2020
Messages
1,420
Nearly halfway through our season. We've played some real quality sides in the short time we've been in the National League.

I feel the top half of this league could probably batter a lot of the lower half of L2.

I think this is to do with only 4 teams moving up and down. League 2 teams can get away with investing less in quality and surviving with only 2 relegation spots. Some of the shocking teams we played last season would struggle in the NL.

On the flip side only 2 teams go up from NL. As we've seen this season, loads of teams will throw huge amounts of investment at the wall in order to achieve promotion (including us somehow!!) and it has led recently to league players dropping into non-league. It's absolutely insane.
 

Leigh_Seasider

South Stand Loyal⭐
Joined
Aug 31, 2019
Messages
3,436
Location
Leigh-on-Sea
Nearly halfway through our season. We've played some real quality sides in the short time we've been in the National League.

I feel the top half of this league could probably batter a lot of the lower half of L2.

I think this is to do with only 4 teams moving up and down. League 2 teams can get away with investing less in quality and surviving with only 2 relegation spots. Some of the shocking teams we played last season would struggle in the NL.

On the flip side only 2 teams go up from NL. As we've seen this season, loads of teams will throw huge amounts of investment at the wall in order to achieve promotion (including us somehow!!) and it has led recently to league players dropping into non-league. It's absolutely insane.
Yeah I don’t think there’s much of a gap between league 1 even and the NL. This was always gonna be a very tough league to compete in, more so than a few years ago. If anyone needed a reality check I think they’ve had it by now!
 

hlane17

Joined
Aug 10, 2020
Messages
1,420
Agreed.

I haven't seen an awful lot of difference at all between the two.

The top 12 in this league would easily survive in league 2
I'd argue I've seen more hunger and desire in NL as it's more competitive than L2 by nature.

There's such a narrow route out of this league that teams fight over the finest of margins and it shows in every game.

I think the NL/EFL need to consider making a 3rd relegation spot out of the EFL to remind clubs nobody is too safe. In the NL maybe an automatics spot behind the league winners?
 

Rob1920

Manager⭐
Joined
Jan 28, 2008
Messages
2,100
Nearly halfway through our season. We've played some real quality sides in the short time we've been in the National League.

I feel the top half of this league could probably batter a lot of the lower half of L2.

I think this is to do with only 4 teams moving up and down. League 2 teams can get away with investing less in quality and surviving with only 2 relegation spots. Some of the shocking teams we played last season would struggle in the NL.

On the flip side only 2 teams go up from NL. As we've seen this season, loads of teams will throw huge amounts of investment at the wall in order to achieve promotion (including us somehow!!) and it has led recently to league players dropping into non-league. It's absolutely insane.
Completey agree with this, been thinking exactly the same myself. And thats why its such a horrible league to drop in to, because its sooo hard to get out of at the top end.
 

fbm

Blue tinted optimist⭐
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
9,006
Location
Cloud cuckoo land
Even though the results haven't gone our way (until fairly recently), I've enjoyed the football in this league much more than L2 which I think is an AWFUL league.
 

Amwell Blue

First XI⭐
Joined
May 1, 2013
Messages
787
When was the the last time a promoted team was relegated back the following season? Sutton were assumed to be weak but they seem to be doing OK.
 

LOS

Centre Half
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
17
Fine lines and all that. Some of them games in the upper echelons of Conference North / South would be a real struggle for clubs towards the bottom of the conference proper. But limited promotions / relegations into / from national league go some way to protect the status quo.

Its akin to pulling up the ladder.

The National league is a lottery to get promoted both into and out of.
 

LOS

Centre Half
Joined
Aug 19, 2019
Messages
17
The ray of hope will be the introduction of a salary cap next season and beyond. Hopefully, should make it more difficult to buy a way into League 2.
It would be nice if it were properly policed, but sadly there are legitimate workarounds for salary caps.

20 odd years ago when Canvey were splashing the cash chasing a conference place, there was a salary cap in place - solution - many of those players were paid up to the cap by the club, and then held additional pseudo positions working within other companies owned by family of the football club owner. Was all a bit of a farce. (Not going into names / additional facts but this 100% happened)
 

Tampa Blue

Director⭐
Joined
Apr 14, 2007
Messages
3,133
Location
Burnham-on-Crouch
It would be nice if it were properly policed, but sadly there are legitimate workarounds for salary caps.

20 odd years ago when Canvey were splashing the cash chasing a conference place, there was a salary cap in place - solution - many of those players were paid up to the cap by the club, and then held additional pseudo positions working within other companies owned by family of the football club owner. Was all a bit of a farce. (Not going into names / additional facts but this 100% happened)
Same as happens in rugby - Saracens being the prime example
 

fbm

Blue tinted optimist⭐
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
9,006
Location
Cloud cuckoo land
When was the the last time a promoted team was relegated back the following season? Sutton were assumed to be weak but they seem to be doing OK.
I don't think that's ever happened

Torquay relegated 2006/7, promoted back to L2 2008/9, relegated again 2013/14

Grimsby relegated 2009/10, promoted back 2015/16, relegated 2020/21

Dagenham promoted 2006/7, relegated 2015/16

Aldershot promoted 2007/8, relegated 2012/13


Not much of any yo-yoing between the two leagues, although Barnet were promoted 2004/5, relegated 2012/13, promoted again 2014/15 and relegated again 2017/18.
 

gatecrasher

Newbie
Joined
Aug 8, 2010
Messages
798
You go back 20 years or so and this league was being won every year by Kiddimister Harriers and teams that were so amateur their grounds held them back from promotion. Now you have several former league clubs with decent fan bases thar fell on hardtimes financially all competing to get back into the arse end of the Football league.

League 2 is worse than the National league, League one is a no man's land where financially mismanaged former prem teams land and slay the division with the odd occasional, Southend/Wycombe/ Plymouth hitting the dizzying heights of the Championship. There is sp much money in the Prem now that clubs that have that one of two seasons In the sun ala Swansea/ Cardiff/ Hull never dip back down to the levels from whence they came. The whole game is now rigged.
 

fbm

Blue tinted optimist⭐
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
9,006
Location
Cloud cuckoo land
I don't think that's ever happened

Torquay relegated 2006/7, promoted back to L2 2008/9, relegated again 2013/14

Grimsby relegated 2009/10, promoted back 2015/16, relegated 2020/21

Dagenham promoted 2006/7, relegated 2015/16

Aldershot promoted 2007/8, relegated 2012/13


Not much of any yo-yoing between the two leagues, although Barnet were promoted 2004/5, relegated 2012/13, promoted again 2014/15 and relegated again 2017/18.
And Macclesfield of course... relegated 2011/12, promoted 2017/18 and relegated again 2019/20 although I think they went bust rather than got relegated.
 

GBJ

Russian Oligarch⭐
Staff member
Joined
Nov 2, 2008
Messages
12,545
Location
Grays
How many Clubs in The National league are part-time? I can’t think of any off the top of my head. The days of this league being semi-pro are long gone.

Half of the division is comprised of former, long standing, football league clubs. A lot of attendances at this level are better than some Lg1/Lg2 clubs. There’s some decent players down here and an unbelievable amount of investment and cash swishing around too.

For all intents and purposes, this is Lg3 in my eyes.
 

fbm

Blue tinted optimist⭐
Joined
Oct 28, 2003
Messages
9,006
Location
Cloud cuckoo land
How many Clubs in The National league are part-time? I can’t think of any off the top of my head. The days of this league being semi-pro are long gone.

Half of the division is comprised of former, long standing, football league clubs. A lot of attendances at this level are better than some Lg1/Lg2 clubs. There’s some decent players down here and an unbelievable amount of investment and cash swishing around too.

For all intents and purposes, this is Lg3 in my eyes.
I think Maidenhead, Wealdstone and Woking are the only ones
 

brigg blue

Newbie⭐
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
900
It's a very split league this one, the bottom teams are woeful and there appears to be 3 clear relegation candidate that just aren't competing.

All the other sides I reckon would stay up in L2, L2 was very poor quality last season we were rubbish and gave other sides a 15 game head start and nearly stayed up.

The whole football league has a big problem, the riches of the premiership along with parachute payments has made yo-yo clubs in the championship, anyone getting promoted from L1 will struggle to keep up without overspending. This overspending then continues down all levels so that very few clubs in this country are viable businesses.

It would save the clubs from themselves if L1 and downward was made part time with a very strict spending cap
 
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