Promotion-chasing York City know that a fifth successive league triumph would definitely move them up to fourth in the table as they take on lowly AFC Telford United at the New Bucks Head later this evening (kick-off 7.45pm).
The fixture had originally been scheduled for December when the Minstermen were actually on a three-game losing sequence, but was postponed following heavy overnight snow.
However, after their most recent setback when being defeated 3-2 at home to Blyth Spartans immediately prior to Christmas, improving City have won four straight league games for the first time since March 2014.
The visitors will also be seeking revenge for a shock 1-0 defeat at Bootham Crescent on the opening day of the campaign, when well-travelled striker Matthew Barnes-Homer grabbed a winner immediately prior to the break.
But just a solitary victory from their previous eight games now leaves the struggling Bucks only a single place above the relegation zone following a 3-0 weekend defeat at leaders Salford City.
“Jon’s [Parkin] a handful for anybody. I thought Raul [Correia] did okay on Saturday and Amari [Morgan-Smith] did great when he came on as well,” assistant manager Dave Penney told BBC Radio York. “With the experience we’ve got we should be doing well in this league. Back that up with Sean Newton, Hamza [Bencherif], Danny Parslow and Adam Bartlett, then we’ve got some experience in there. You need some freshness and young legs around it as well, obviously. We don’t want too many old men in the team. But we’re hoping we certainly carry on winning and Jon [Parkin] can carry on scoring and just keep picking points up.”
AFC Telford United Team News:
Experienced midfielder Ellis Deeney, 26, goes straight into the squad having arrived for an undisclosed fee from Tamworth. Manager Rob Edwards could make changes in a bid to halt a recent slide that has his team currently just outside the relegation places, although an encouraging weekend first-half display witnessed them holding leaders Salford City until conceding three times after the break. Former City loanee Jordan Lussey was expected to feature but fellow midfielder Jack Rea is still out.
AFC Telford United (from): Schofield, White, Leak, Johnson, Sutton, Royle, Dinanga, Lussey, Ebanks-Blake, Marsden, Wilson, Deeney, Cowans, Singh, Newby, Murphy, Leonard
Player to watch: Sylvan Ebanks-Blake
Former top-flight striker with Wolverhampton Wanderers.
York City Team News:
Former skipper Simom Heslop returns to the squad having not appeared since the end of October. Striker Amari Morgan-Smith is similarly pushing for a recall having come off the bench to score the weekend winner against Bradford Park Avenue. Clovis Kamdjo [knee], Louis Almond [shoulder] and Michael Rankine [high blood pressure] remain sidelined.
York City (probable): Bartlett, Law, Burn, Bencherif, Ferguson, Moke, Heslop, Newton, Connolly, Correia, Parkin
subs (from): Rowe, Morgan-Smith, Parslow, Gray, Smith, Simpson
Player to watch: Jon Parkin
Looking to score for the sixth successive game having netted nine in the previous five – and remarkably twenty-five in twenty-five appearances so far this season.
Match Facts & Stats
The Minstermen remained unbeaten on both previous visits, including a scoreless draw in their only league meeting in December 2011. Team: Ingham, Challinor, McGurk, Fyfield, Meredith, Kerr, Boucaud (Reed), McLaughlin, Blair, Walker (Ashikodi), Chambers (Pilkington). Prior to that York won an FA Trophy semi-final first-leg tie 2-0 in March 2009, with goals from Simon Rusk and Ben Purkiss. Team: Ingham, Purkiss, Pejic, Parslow, Robinson, Mackin, McWilliams, Rusk (Greaves), Brodie (Sodje), Boyes (McGurk), McBreen
Link: Red Rewind – City so close to Wembley
AFC Telford – Nuneaton (H); York – Spennymoor (H)