Fleet’s long evening trip to York was all in vain as this twice-postponed tie was finally decided by the slimmest of margins. Matty Blair’s goal three minutes into the second half, to add to the brace he scored against the Fleet in the league a few weeks ago, was enough as Jason Walker also missed a late penalty for the home side.
Michael West was recovering from his hernia operation so Gozie Ugwu finally pulled on a Fleet shirt after the commencement of his loan spell was delayed by the weather, while ex-Minsterman Neil Barrett had to settle for a place on the bench.
York were typically dangerous going forwards, though Fleet defended resolutely and had the guile to unsettle the home defence on the occasions they got into the final third. But the Minstermen seemed to lack the cutting edge they possessed in the league game here last month and found their gameplan frustrated by a solid and tight Fleet line-up. Preston Edwards wasn’t overly busy, holding Erik Tonne’s shot and then stopping Patrick McLaughlin’s effort after an initial shot was scrambled clear from the six-yard box. Fleet’s best chance came when Liam Enver-Marum showed good awareness to send in a dangerous ball across goal that was cut out by a York defender.
The second-half was a much livelier affair but the Fleet were hit for six within three minutes of the restart ? a familiar time to concede this season. A cross from the left was helped on with some measure of fortune by Scott Kerr and fell kindly for Blair who bundled the ball over the line.
On 51 minutes, Enver-Marum capitalised on a bad Chris Doig error and found himself through on goal but Michael Ingham did very well to save.