York City would equal their impressive winning sequence of four years ago if they can achieve a sixth successive victory against promotion rivals Spennymoor Town at Bootham Crescent.
Their spectacular midweek 5-3 triumph at AFC Telford United had followed earlier wins against Bradford Park Avenue, Darlington and North Ferriby United [twice].
That witnesses York now fourth in the table and within six points of second-placed Harrogate Town, although still well short of clear leaders Salford City.
The Minstermen’s second-half-of-the-season heroics under manager Nigel Worthington back in 2013-14 eventually propelled them into the end-of-season play-offs. That was despite them languishing just outside the relegation places at the turn of the year.
While it’s hoped that might be a favourable omen, City’s success that year was almost solely based on a virtually impregnable defence organised in front of a potential future England goalkeeper, while their attack usually struggled to register on too many occasions.
That six-game victory sequence in March 2014 actually featured only eight goals scored – but just a single one conceded. And for good measure York also had a trio of scoreless draws either side of it.
Not to be outdone, weekend visitors Spennymoor have also won their previous five games, including an FA Trophy penalty shoot-out victory over Gainsborough Trinity.
They then knocked National League Solihull Moors out in the next round having earlier completed a league double over neighbours Blyth Spartans across the festive period.
“I’ve never seen them [Spennymoor] play. I didn’t see the game up at their place,” assistant manager Dave Penney told BBC Radio York. “We’ll have a match report that we’ll sit down and have a look at. Look at their strength and personnel and pick what we’re going to do in terms of personnel and formation – and get ready for the game. You have to make sure that we know what we’re going to do. But you still need to be mindful of what their strengths and weaknesses are and what they do at set-plays.”
York City Team News:
The Minstermen will make checks on striker Jon Parkin and midfielder Adriano Moke after slight strains during their spectacular midweek victory at AFC Telford United. The hosts are still without Clovis Kamdjo [knee], Louis Almond [shoulder] and Michael Rankine [high blood pressure].
York City (probable): Bartlett, Law, Burn, Bencherif, Ferguson, Moke, Heslop, Newton, Connolly, Correia, Parkin
subs: Rowe, Morgan-Smith, Parslow, Gray, Simpson
Player to watch: Simon Heslop
First-game back at Bootham Crescent since the 3-2 defeat to Tamworth at the end of October.
Spennymoor Town Team News:
Former York duo Matty Dixon and Bradley Fewster appear most likely to be included amongst the visitors’ substitutes. Midfielder Nathan Lowe has arrived on loan from Southport until the end of the season and was awaiting clearance.
Spennymoor Town (possible): Porter, Griffiths, Mason, Ramshaw, Tait, Curtis, Hall, Henry, Taylor, Anderson, Foley
subs: Dixon, Bland, Chantler, Johnson, Fewster
Player to watch: Glen Taylor
Leading marksman with fifteen goals already this season.
Match Facts & Stats
It’s a first-ever meeting at Bootham Crescent. York’s 4-2 victory at Spennymoor earlier in the season was an opening encounter between the clubs.
York – Stockport (A); Spennymoor – Tamworth (H)
Weekend Games: AFC Telford v Nuneaton; Alfreton v Leamington; Blyth v FC United of Manchester; Bradford PA v Gainsborough; Curzon Ashton v Kidderminster; Darlington v Chorley; North Ferriby v Boston; Salford v Harrogate; Southport v Stockport; Tamworth v Brackley; York City v Spennymoor