The month of October may be considered rather early for season-defining results but York City really need to achieve a positive one when visiting title-favourites Salford City this weekend.
The Minstermen currently trail their latest opponents by seven points in the table having also played a game more – and can’t seriously afford any further advancement on that in Greater Manchester.
York already won there in the FA Cup last month courtesy of a couple of Jon Parkin goals, although soon confirming their dreadful inconsistency when promptly losing to a team two divisions below them in the next round.
Salford have actually been defeated in both of their last couple of home games, with their City cup knockout soon being followed by a shock 3-2 reversal to Leamington.
They were also beaten by Martin Gray’s Darlington on the opening weekend of the season after York’s recent signing David Ferguson scored twice.
“This is a big game, no different to what last weekend was,” manager Martin Gray told BBC Radio York. “We’ve got to go there with the same approach to win a game. I’ve never been a manager going anywhere thinking a point’s good. It’s what we do. We’ve got to be respectful of what they’re about. But we go with a game plan of coming back with three points.”
Salford City Team News:
Former Carlisle United centre-back Danny Livesey remains out after sustaining an ankle injury at the beginning of the season. But otherwise it’s a full squad available.
Salford City (possible): Crocombe, Nottingham, Touray, Burton, Piergianni, Hogan, Dudley, Maynard, Phenix, Redshaw, Askew
subs: Mafuta, McHale, Shelton, Beesley, Dieseruvwe
Player to watch: Carl Piergianni
Former Stockport County centre-back who was impressive in the recent meeting of the clubs.
York City Team News:
New signing James Gray goes straight into the squad having arrived on a month’s loan from Torquay United. Midfielder Aidan Connolly has also recovered from a muscle injury but Michael Rankine and Clovis Kamdjo remain sidelined.
York City (probable): Peacock-Farrell, Law, Parslow, Bencherif, Ferguson, Heslop, Moke, Newton, Morgan-Smith, Gray, Parkin
subs (from): Whittle, Connolly, Sukar, Simpson, Wharton, Felix, Smith, Almond, Muggleton
Player to watch: James Gray
Brought in to provide a reliable goalscorer alongside leading marksman Jon Parkin.
Match Facts & Stats
Salford – Bradford PA (A); York – Tamworth (H)
Weekend Games: Brackley v Blyth; Chorley v FC United of Manchester; Curzon Ashton v Boston; Darlington v Bradford PA; Harrogate v Leamington; Kidderminster v Spennymoor; North Ferriby v AFC Telford; Nuneaton v Stockport; Salford v York City; Southport v Gainsborough; Tamworth v Alfreton