THE devastation wreaked by Storm Desmond on Cumbria these past few days puts life into perspective.

When family homes and belongings are being washed away, just a fortnight before Christmas, a game like football seems irrelevant.

Yet clubs are a big part of the communities in which they exist and can play their part, no matter how small it may seem.

Following their FA Cup victory at Welling United on Sunday, Carlisle United’s players offered to help in any way they could.

The same players who returned to the club’s Brunton Park ground to find it under water and, in the case of former Hereford United goalkeeper Dan Hanford, their cars having been swept away.

Yet some of the squad have been out after training this week to help with the clear-up operation and assist people to salvage what they can from their homes.

Midfielder Gary Dicker explained: “There were people after the game (at Welling), when we went over to clap the fans in the stands, who’ve been affected.

“There were one or two who said their houses were flooded and they still made it to the game.

“People determined to carry on even though they face weeks, maybe months, of disruption.”

As for the League Two team, it could be a long time before they too can return to their home with the visit of Notts County on December 19 now being played at Preston North End’s Deepdale.

Footballers are often easy targets for criticism, so it’s only right they get the praise when it’s due.