AFC Fylde will make their long-awaited return to National League North action as they travel to York City’s brand new LNER Community Stadium tomorrow.
‘Get to Know’ Tuesday’s opponents a little better ahead of the 7 pm KO.
York City Football Club was founded in 1908 as an amateur club initially joining the Northern League, and acquiring a ground in Holgate Road. The club moved to the Yorkshire Combination temporarily to reduce travelling, but turned professional in 1912 and joined the Midland League. They played their last season in 1914/15 before the suspension of the competition due to the First World War. The club then went into liquidation in August 1917. They would go on to be re-founded in 1922 as York City Association Football and Athletic Club and joined the Midland League after an unsuccessful application to the Football League. The Minstermen went on to spend seven seasons in the Midland League and finally saw their application to the Football League be successful in 1929, joining the Third Division North. Throughout the Second World War, York played in wartime competitions and in 1942 won the Combined Counties Cup.
Post Second World War, York pursued promotion at times achieving a new club record of fourth with 53 points in the 1952/53 season. 1954/55 also saw the Minstermen’s longest FA Cup run, which saw York reach the FA Cup semi-final losing 2-0 at Roker Park in the cup replay after drawing to Newcastle United 1-1 at Hillsborough. This would mean that York City became the first Third Tier club to play in an FA Cup semi-final replay. York achieved promotion to the Second Division in the 1973/74 season, finishing fifth in the next season before suffering relegation back to the Third Division in 21st in 1975/76. They were further relegated to the Fourth Division in the 1977/78 season. York won the 1983/84 Fourth Division season, becoming the first Football League team to achieve a three-figure total in a season. In 1992/93, York gained promotion to the Second Division via play-offs beating Crewe Alexandra in the finals at Wembley. They were close to reaching promotion to the First Division but lost in the play-off semi-final against Stockport County.
1998/99 marked the beginning of some tougher times for York, starting with the club’s relegation from the Second Division. The club went up for sale in 2001, with chairman Douglas Craig announcing the club would resign from the Football League if a buyer were not found. The club was taken over by John Batchelor and went into administration in 2002. The Supporters Trust bought the club in 2003. York would then go on to be relegated to the Conference after finishing bottom of the Third Division in 2003/04. The Minstermen won the FA Trophy in 2012, and returned to the Football League after beating Luton Town 2-1 in the 2012 play-off final, achieving promotion to League Two. However, York were relegated to the National League in 2015/16, and again to the National League North in 2016/17 despite winning the 2017 FA Trophy Final against Macclesfield Town.
The Manager – Steve Watson
Steve Watson has managed the Minstermen since being appointed in January 2019 after departing from Gateshead. Watson also experienced a successful playing career before going into coaching. As a player, the York City manager represented Newcastle United after coming through in their youth ranks and went on to make over 200 appearances for the Premier League side, with his first appearance for the club making him the youngest player for the Magpies ever. Watson went on to play for Aston Villa, Everton, West Bromwich Albion, and Sheffield Wednesday retiring after long-term injury problems.
Watson’s coaching experience goes back nine years, as he started as a Development Coach for Huddersfield Town. He was then appointed as a coach at Birmingham City, moving on to become an assistant manager at Macclesfield Town.
Club Captain – Sean Newton
Club captain Sean Newton has been with the Minstermen ever since joining on loan on October 2016 from Wrexham, signing permanently on January 2017. The Liverpool born defender started his youth football career with Chester City, making his debut for the first team in 2008. He then went on loan to Southport FC, and Droylsden before joining the latter permanently. Newton then went on to join Barrow temporarily, before signing for AFC Telford United where he made over 100 appearances. The defender then went on loan to Stockport County, joining County permanently for a season where he was the club’s third top scorer. Newton went on to play for Lincoln City, Notts County on loan, and finally Wrexham before settling in at York City where he has now made over 120 appearances scoring over 20 goals. Newton was appointed York City captain prior to 2017/18, and the defender is also an England C international having made 5 appearances.
The Minstermen, much like AFC Fylde, will be desperate to get back into National League North action given their last game was on January 5th. Following Saturday’s postponement, it’s now been well over a month since Fylde’s last game which happened back on January 9th. York City are currently 8th in the league with 12 games played, and will definitely be hoping to push for higher places in the table. They have totalled 6 wins this season, and only suffered 2 defeats.
The Coasters will return to action hoping to push closer to Gloucester City looking to achieve another National League North win, earning automatic promotion to the National League once more. Fylde currently sit 3rd on 27 points with 14 matches played, well supported by a long 6 match undefeated streak in National League North games earlier in the season.
This will be the first time that the Minstermen and AFC Fylde will go up against each other in history. Generally considering, York City have scored 21 goals this season which is not far of Fylde’s 23. York has shown a tendency for going into their matches strong, as they score the majority of their goals within the first 15 minutes with 33.3% of their goals being scored in this window. The Coasters on the other hand have scored 28.6% of their goals between minutes 60-75’ and 75-90’.
This will be another difficult line-up to predict given the long stoppage in play. The Coasters will not be able to count on Jack Sanders and Nathan Shaw as they have both returned to their respective clubs after their loan, Wigan and Blackpool. As for York City, this is what we could be looking at:
1 Pete Jameson 6 Robbie Tinkler 12 Josh King 30 Matty Brown 4 Sean Newton © 3 Scott Barrow 7 Akil Wright 8 Michael Woods 16 Olly Dyson 10 Jack Redshaw 9 Jake Cassidy
Goalkeeper Pete Jameson has been their regular option in net, and he is expected to continue starting when coming up against the Coasters.
The Minstermen are expected to start with Robbie Tinkler bombing up and down the right side, as the defender has been the main option on this side since joining York from Aldershot Town. The young Josh King could be starting as a central defender, alongside the experienced Matty Brown and club captain Sean Newton. Scott Barrow should complete York City’s defensive line starting on the left side.
York City’s midfield should be covered by three players, and we could see former AFC Fylde player Akil Wright starting. Wright had previously played 3 games for Fylde on loan from Fleetwood Town, where he came through the youth ranks. Former Chelsea youngster Michael Woods is also expected to start, he made two appearances for the Premier League side in FA Cup fixtures. The creative young Olly Dyson should complete the midfield for the Minstermen.
Leading the frontline for York City should be the talented Jack Redshaw, alongside the experienced Jake Cassidy. Both have featured on the score sheets for the Minstermen throughout this season.
One to Watch – Jack Redshaw
Jack Redshaw’s talent and experience is definitely of value to York City, and the attacking player has been an important asset to Steve Watson since joining from Halifax Town prior to this season. Redshaw has regularly been an important player for his clubs throughout his career and his quality on the ball will be a threat to the Coasters in Tuesday’s fixture. Redshaw started his youth career playing for Premier League side Manchester City, signing with the club’s academy at the age of nine. He signed a professional contract with the Citizens at the age of 18, and made his first team debut in a friendly against the UAE National Team in 2009.
Following his release from City, he went on to sign for Rochdale in League One, but left in January after his contract was mutually terminated and he went on to join Salford City for his first spell with the club. Redshaw then joined Altrincham spending part of the 2011/12 season with the Greater Manchester side before joining Morecambe. He made 120 League appearances for Morecambe between 2012 and 2015 scoring 36 goals.
Redshaw then moved on to Blackpool prior to the 2015/16 season, making 36 appearances for the Seasiders and scoring 7 goals before his release in 2017. He returned to Salford City for a second spell signing prior to the 2017/18 season, and he was a key player for the Lions scoring 17 goals in 36 appearances for Salford. He left after his contract expired for a season-long spell with Halifax Town, which marked his final experience before joining York City.