CHESTER FC’s rising stars are in action tonight and supporters are being urged to turn out in their numbers to help safeguard the club’s future.

The Blues’ youth team play host to Gateshead in the National League Under-19s Alliance Cup, with a place in the quarter-finals at stake (7pm kick-off).

Admission to the Swansway Chester Stadium is free, but donations are being welcomed as Chester try to raise the £50,000 needed to keep the club in business. More than  £17,000 has been raised so far and this evening’s match is doubling up as a chance for fans to come together and generate much-needed cash for the club.

A large attendance is expected.

Academy head coach Calum McIntyre said: "The football club is so important to so many people.

“We will show you what it means to us with our performance on the pitch, show everyone what it means to you with your performance in the stands.

“Get behind these lads from the word go. We're Chester and nobody does it like us."

The extent of Chester’s financial woes were revealed at a City Fans United (CFU) meeting last week. The supporter-owned club needs £50,000 in the short-term in order to remain in business, fans were shocked to learn.

Since then, a fundraising drive has helped boost the coffers and a large attendance is expected this evening as supporters rally round in aid of their club, just as they did in 2010 when the old Chester City FC went into administration and was reborn as Chester FC.

Since last week’s CFU meeting, CFU chairman Jonny Hughes, vice-chair Neil Bellis and directors Anne Salmon and David O’Toole have all resigned. Four new directors have been co-opted on to the board – former CFU chairman Simon Olorenshaw and ex-directors Mark Howell, Jeff Banks and Calvin Hughes. 

Banks and Howell were on the board of the new, reborn club in 2010 when it rose from the ashes of Chester City FC.