Vandals have struck at a juniors' football pitch causing safety fears and throwing the side’s games into jeopardy.

Senhouse Juniors FC has reacted with anger at anti-social behaviour which has caused damage to their playing field.

The pitch was significantly damaged by cars rallying on the grass. It is believed the incident happened on Sunday night.

The club’s chairperson Marie Money said: “A member of the public stopped our coach and said ‘have you seen the state of the pitch?’

“There is quite a lot of damage to it with the grass being soft anyway from play the day before.”

Deep indents in the surface mean future games could be cancelled for player safety if improvements cannot be made quickly.

“If someone went over on there it could mean a snapped ankle.”

The club’s representatives were disappointed to find the damage as the pitch is an important resource to youth teams.

Senhouse Juniors FC has teams for boys under 16 and under 15 and an under-12 girls' team.

Marie said: “There are three teams that might not get to play and train. Player safety is the most important thing.”

Grassroots football has been on hold until recently due to the coronavirus pandemic, adding to the frustrations for the club. “They’ve only just got back to football,” said Marie

She added that although there has been an issue with dog fouling, it was a surprise to see the scale of the latest damage. “We’ve been on there six years and it’s only the second time we’ve had any anti-social behaviour.”

Allerdale Borough Council is working with Tivoli to repair the playing surface.

The under 16 team should be taking to the pitch today but if the field cannot be rectified in time the game will be called off. “The kids will be devastated” said Marie.

A spokesperson for Allerdale Borough Council said: "The Council is aware of some damage to the football pitch and will be working with our street cleansing and grounds maintenance partner for Tivoli to rectify it.

"We'd ask that all members of the public respect these green spaces so they can be used by all the community.