FOUR-legged football fans made their club canine champions - by setting a world record for the largest number of dogs at a match.
Maltby Main’s dog-loving supporters ensured an appearance on Match of the Day’s BBC lunchtime show MOTD by smashing the previous best by more than half.
Seventy-eight dogs joined 177 human fans at the match against Pontefract Colliery FC at Muglet Lane on Saturday - officially dubbed Non-League Dog Day.
The record had been held by West Didsbury FC, who recently managed 32 pitchside pooches at their Manchester ground.
A campaign - titled Bring Your Hound to the Ground - was the idea of Main chairman Wilf Race, who said he was always looking at ways to engage with the community.
“One of our most loyal supporters, Stuart Rogers, brings his British bulldog George to every home game, which made me think there must be some angle here with the community,” Wilf said.
The idea gathered momentum and the day was turned into a family fun day at Main’s ground.
Bulldog George was joined on the sideline by an array of four-legged friends - despite the rain - and Wilf said all had been very well behaved. There was a brass band and bouncy castle, as well as a £500 bucket collection for Support Dogs - the club’s chosen charity for next season - which provides assistance dogs for people with autism, epilepsy and other disabilities.
“We had the most kids we have seen there for a long time and had around 70 more in the crowd than we usually average,” said Wilf.
“Most of the time people take football too seriously, and it’s all about winning and points. But as chairman I’ve grown to realise it’s about much more than that.
“Since the world record has been broken, a number of clubs, including West Didsbury, said they were going to try and have a go at it next season.
“We welcome that. Let someone beat it and we will have a go the following season!”