Date: 10th March 2018 at 5:20pm
Written by: Vital York City

York City claimed a scrappy 1-0 victory against Boston United to move up to fourth place in the table.

England ‘C’ international David Ferguson’s cross was diverted into the net with seventeen minutes remaining before a trio of late sending-offs produced a chaotic ending.

Simon Heslop was one of those dismissed when receiving a second yellow card, while Boston pair Andi Thanoj and Ben Middleton were shown straight reds.

Manager Martin Gray earlier made a couple of changes with Daniel Parslow and Louis Almond, in his first start since October, replacing defensive pair Connor Brown and Jonny Burn in a revised 3-4-1-2 formation.

Boston were noticeably without suspended former City striker Reece Thompson, who was sent-off during their recent defeat to Leamington. Another ex-York man Taron Hare also missed out but one-time Bootham Crescent youngster Ryan Qualter started.

The Pilgrims actually made the better start with skipper Sean Newton’s slack pass leaving his side in early trouble, before striker Alex Kempster cleared well as the visitors earned a number of corners. United’s Brad Abbott also received a caution for simulation inside the area.

There was warm applause on seventeen minutes in memory of local teenagers Mason Pearson and George Turner who were sadly killed following a serious road accident near Thirsk on Wednesday evening.

But the football was continuing to be decidedly poor, with York not seriously threatening as the midway point of the opening half was reached. Another misplaced pass by Alex Pattison almost allowed in Jack Dyche.

Home keeper Adam Bartlett had already sustained a knock in a challenge with on loan Jake Beesley – and required subsequent treatment, with deputy Luke Simpson readying himself for action on the sidelines.

Midfielder Heslop received a caution five minutes from the interval as it continued to be an absolutely dismal spectacle, with neither goalkeeper remotely troubled.

At least York finally forced a couple of late first-half corners after on loan Pattison’s angled shot was deflected behind, while an unfavourable bounce then almost caught out Bartlett at the opposite end.

The former Darlington keeper returned for the start of the second period despite appearing to be struggling with a foot injury as his colleagues won a couple of early corners.

Both Ferguson and Almond had efforts blocked with the rain noticeably increasing, and the returning striker witnessed another charged down from Adriano Moke’s cross. Aidan Connolly was then denied by another block before Moke had a further attempt pushed behind by goalkeeper Jon Stewart.

Thanoj called Bartlett into action at the other end, while Almond’s reply had Stewart once again making the save; with Connor Smith soon displacing Moke in a first change by the home side. He was soon joined by Raul Correia for recent signing Kempster.

Ex-Harrogate Town midfielder Thanoj was comfortably wide for the visitors from distance, before Bartlett reacted superbly to keep out substitute Benny Igiehon and then Ashley Hemmings’ instant follow-up.

But York finally went ahead with seventeen minutes remaining when Ferguson’s cross was diverted into the net as the sliding Middleton attempted to intercept.

However, Newton soon made an excellent challenge to thwart Beesley, who had to be replaced as part of a double-change – with one of those, leading goalscorer Kabongo Tshimanga, later forcing Bartlett to turn aside.

Former Walsall winger Hemmings was then much too high ahead of City’s on loan defender Burn replacing Almond inside the closing five minutes.

There was suddenly a late double sending-off with the already cautioned Heslop given a second yellow card following a late challenge – and Thanoj brandished a straight red for his reaction.

And that pair were soon joined by Middleton after his bad challenge on Correia, while home keeper Bartlett also had to be dragged away by team-mates when celebrating directly in front of the visiting supporters at the final whistle.

York City: Bartlett, Parslow, Bencherif, Newton, Moke (Smith 64), Heslop, Pattison, Ferguson, Connolly, Kempster (Correia 66), Almond (Burn 86)

subs (unused): Brown, Simpson

Goals: Ferguson (73)

Boston United: Stewart, Middleton, Brogan, Thanoj, Keane, Qualter, Rollins (Wafula 78), Abbott, Beesley (Tshimanga 78), Dyche (Igiehon 59), Hemmings

subs (unused): Atkinson, Willis

Ref: J. Matthews

Att: 2,461 (246 Boston)