York followed up the previous week’s cup victory with a confident performance and convincing home win against Wakefield.
Despite a difficult surface, York began well – passing the ball crisply, working hard for one another and putting their opponents under pressure. They created a couple of early openings, but nothing to really trouble the Wakefield keeper. On the fifteen minute mark, however, they finally made their pressure pay off. Good work from Joe Meek and Ben Garbutt-Smith set up Lleyton Brown, who finished well to open the scoring. 1-0. Cameron Wakerley then showed a lovely piece of skill to control the ball, beat his defender and break into the box, but the Wakefield defence recovered to crowd him out and deny him. York extended their lead soon after, though. A bit of quality and pace out on the left from Adi Bajaziti brought about a chance which Joe Thompson finished with confidence. 2-0. York continued to work hard to maintain the upper hand in midfield: Leo Littlewood and Harry Fort denying their opponents space and showing their quality going forward; Billy Dickinson growing in stature in the holding role, Ben Whitehead with his touch and skill in the final third. York went into the half-time break looking well worth their two goal lead.
Second half and York again began brightly, pressing Wakefield high up the pitch and forcing them to turn over possession. This pressure paid off – Wakerley running onto a through ball and coolly slotting a left footer past the keeper to make it 3-0. At this point, it seemed as if York then took their foot off the gas. Wakefield started to enjoy a little more possession to string a few good moves together, one of which forced the home keeper Jack Yates into a sharp, left-handed save from close-range. York didn’t heed the warning and, soon after, Wakefield scored the goal that their attacking play warranted. 3-1 and Wakefield sensed their opponents were vulnerable and they pushed for another. York’s defence of Seb Holowkiewicz, Billy Hobson and Ben Armitage, marshalled well by Jack Cottam, stood firm and stuck to their task to help maintain their lead and allow their midfield to regain control. After a clever run into the box, Whitehead latched on to a loose ball to guide the ball low into the net to make it four before Bajaziti put his side 5-1 up when he scored from a tight angle. A long-range free kick from Brown almost made it six – his dipping shot cracked against the bar with the keeper well beaten, Garbutt-Smith was first to the rebound but headed just over.
A confident, assured and tidy performance from York who fully merited their 5-1 victory.
Scorers : Brown, Thompson, Wakerley, Whitehead, Bajaziti
MOM: Jack Cottam – strong, good communication, a really good defensive display.