An under-strength Fleet side were put to the sword by 10-man York City as the home side’s Matty Blair took the plaudits with a man-of-the-match winning performance and two goals.
Liam Daish was dealt a blow even before kick-off with the withdrawal of skipper Paul Lorraine through illness and Michael West who sustained injury on Tuesday. That meant Johnny Herd came in at left-bac, birthday boy Joe Howe moved to right back and Craig Stone was forced to partner Yado Mambo in the middle of defence. And the manager’s substitutes list showed he was down to the barebones with assistant Paul McCarthy named along with youngsters Che Masroh-McDowell, Ben Adams and Lanre Azeez.
York showed their intent early with Jamie Reed’s fifth minute shot after a decent move whizzed just wide of the post. But it took them only the same amount of time to take the lead when Jon Challinor’s cross from the right on 10 minutes wasn’t dealt with and Blair was on hand to fire low past Preston Edwards.
Fleet struggled to gain a foothold, Liam Enver-Marum’s ball into Tom Phipp as