AS Manchester City’s decadent rise to the top was crowned with a first domestic treble, there is less to celebrate at the other end of the financial spectrum in English football.

Take nothing away from Pep Guardiola and a team of brilliant players, assembled meticulously, if expensively, by some of the finest minds in the game and the way they whitewashed Watford in such extravagant manner.

Their ascension as kings of the Premier League should not be downplayed because there are ills elsewhere in the game. They fully deserve to be lauded as one of the greatest teams ever assembled on these isles.

But one hopes as Vincent Kompany lifted the trophy in a one-sided final the likes of which there has not been since 1903, that the powers that be sat uneasily in their Wembley hospitality boxes and at least considered the worrying direction this national game is going.

If City can eclipse Watford so dominantly in English football’s traditional showpiece, how widely has the financial gap been expanded elsewhere?

For a glimpse, perhaps the officials of the Football Association and EFL would like to have joined us outside Burnden Park's Asda as we collected food and provisions for staff left abandoned by their employers.

I, obviously, speak for Bolton Wanderers. I have seen first-hand how irresponsible ownership of a football club has affected good people – those lucky few who kick the ball about for a living and the many who turn up to keep them in a job.

Their story is upsetting but not unique. Just down the road more decent folk have been left in the lurch at Bury, and there are more cases of unpaid wages and struggling staff at Macclesfield Town. I’ve had the pleasure of covering all three clubs at one time or another in my career – and can vouch that the passion of their support is just as strong as that at Bolton.

Football fans from far and wide turned out on Saturday to bring provisions for staff at Wanderers who have gone unpaid for several weeks, a show of solidarity which warms the heart in a time when it easy to feel bitter and angry.

Colours of Liverpool, Everton, Leeds, Huddersfield, Wigan, Blackpool and Preston lined-up with locals at Middlebrook and Burnden this weekend to pass on food for people who have found themselves in a most unimaginable position.

Pay problems which at one stage were consigned to the higher-earning players have, over time, left vulnerable people in a downright disgraceful situation.

Over the last week I have heard accounts of parents unable to afford nappies for their children, women unable to buy sanitary products, men in tears at the prospect of going cap in hand to a food bank to bring meals home to his family.

And this, with football’s Premier League gravy train at full speed some 10 miles down the road.

For so many of us, FA Cup final day used to be about sitting in front of the television, watching the team coach wind its way from hotel to Wembley after breakfast, listening to awkward interviews, goals from each round, even It’s a Knockout.

On Saturday, good people forgot the nostalgia and faced up to modern issues facing football communities all over the country, including Bolton. People like Dave Kelly, a dyed-in-the-wool Evertonian who had been among the 50,000-plus who crammed into Burnden Park for a League Cup semi-final replay in 1977, won by a whisker by the men from Merseyside.

Kelly has been the driving force behind Fans Supporting Foodbanks, an initiative which started in Walton – the only ward in England with two Premier League clubs – yet also one of the most deprived.

Seeing the inequality on his doorstep, he set about using football as a conduit for his message that hunger does not wear club colours. On Saturday that statement has never felt so true.

The story of Wanderers’ staff has received national attention, condemnation from all sides. But there has been no comment from the EFL, no message of support, no suggestion of a solution, and certainly no apology that their lack of governance has contributed to the club’s downfall.

The football family has rallied round to ensure Bolton’s workforce can live their lives and - with any luck - it may help some supporters exit this nightmare with a little bit more faith in human nature than they entered into it. Whether it pricks the conscience of football’s decision-makers is another matter altogether.