Adam Dugdale insists Morecambe’s players will fight to the finish with some knowing their Football League careers are on the line.
The Shrimps have had a season to forget with Jim Bentley’s side sitting 21st in the table ahead of the final-day game against relegated bottom side York at the Globe Arena on Saturday.
Dugdale, out of contract in the summer, is one of a number of players who could feature in Morecambe red for the final time and knows the players need to give the fans something to cheer about.
He said: “I’ve been in a few different dressing rooms now and this is one of the best I’ve been involved in.
“Just for one reason or another it hasn’t clicked since Christmas when it did at the start.
“People are fighting for their lives. They’ve got mortgages to pay and kids to feed.
“I don’t think anyone’s on their holidays just let, there’s contracts to earn.
“All the talk about us not caring is nonsense.
“The performances and the results definitely haven’t been good enough though.
“It’s disappointing for the fans and hopefully we can pick up three points and give them something to smile about on Saturday.”
The 1-1 draw at Exeter on Saturday was a marked improvement on shipping 11 goals in the defeats to Cambridge and Stevenage.
The Shrimps came agonisingly close to a first win in six, with referee Darren Drysdale turning down two strong penalty appeals before awarding Exeter one which Jayden Stockley converted to snatch a point with time almost up.
Dugdale said: “It’s disappointing the way it ended.
“I don’t think the referee will be too happy with himself when he looks back at it.
“As players we have bad games and officials are no different.
“We’d stuck to a good gameplan, the perfect gameplan to be honest with you. “We haven’t been great as a team defensively but I thought we were very good. All over the pitch everyone worked very hard to do their jobs.
“But the penalty at the end just sums us up this season.”
The improved performance was a welcome one for boss Bentley who has come under pressure in recent weeks with The Shrimps having won just two of their last 20 in League 2.
Dugdale believes the Wembley-winning captain is the right man to take the club forwards however.
He said: “It’s a results-based business but for me Jim is the right man for the job.
“Whether I’m here next season or not I think he’s got Morecambe at heart.
“I don’t think you’re going to get anyone who will work as hard as him.
“It honestly just has been one of those seasons where a lot of things have gone against us.
“At the end of the day it’s about keeping Morecambe in the Football League.
“Whichever way you want to dress it up that’s what the first aim is.
“We put a lot of pressure on ourselves at the start of the season saying we wanted to make the play-offs but the gaffer’s got a hard job off the pitch getting players in.
“I honestly think he’s done well.”