CALVIN ANDREW is expected to make his York City debut from the bench in tonight’s home match with bottom-of-the-table Torquay.
The 27-year-old forward has joined the Minstermen until the end of the season, having spent the first six months of the campaign with Mansfield before becoming a free agent in January.
Andrew has not played any competitive football since and will be eased into action, therefore, by City chief Nigel Worthington, who has also challenged the 6ft 2in target man to bag himself a permanent move to Bootham Crescent in the summer.
Luton-born Andrew has previously played in the Championship for his home-town club, Crystal Palace and Millwall.
His goalscoring record might be underwhelming - Andrew has only managed to net once in each of the last four seasons and has a career tally of 17 from 222 professional outings - but he caught Worthington’s eye when he helped the Stags secure a 2-1 win in North Yorkshire back in September with the City chief adding: “He’s not played a lot of football over the last six weeks but he’s a good pro who looks after himself.
“He will probably be getting 15 or 20 minutes off the bench for the next couple of weeks and we will take it from there. We are giving him a platform to perform and sell himself to York City and, if that does not happen, then he could sell himself to another football club.
“He’s a big unit and a strong boy who can get hold of the ball and work defences. He works very hard and has the same ethos we have in the group. He’s also capable of scoring a goal although he probably would have liked to have scored more goals than he has done.”
The Minstermen are still waiting for scan results to confirm that top scorer Wes Fletcher and Northern Ireland international winger Josh Carson both suffered medial ligament damage during Saturday’s 1-0 win at Portsmouth but the likelihood remains that the pair will be sidelined for the rest of the campaign.
With Andrew recruited to fill Fletcher’s recent role as an impact substitute, Worthington has also called upon Carson’s replacement to compensate fully for his loss.
Worthington looks likely to choose between Ryan Jarvis and Sander Puri for wing duty against Torquay and he said: “Josh gives you bags of energy going forward and defensively and, whoever picks up that mantle and steps into the breach, has to carry that on because they can’t be playing catch-up now.
“Wes has had an unfortunate time with injuries but, when he’s on the pitch either from the start or as a substitute, he’s always liable to score or create a goal. We have brought Calvin in and he was a real handful when we played Mansfield so, hopefully, he can be a handful for us.
“When you lose a player such as Wes, it’s important to keep some strength on the bench so, if you need to make a change, you have that experience and quality to step in.”
Worthington has not ruled out making further additions to his squad, before Thursday’s deadline for loans.
Torquay will arrive at Bootham Crescent six points from safety and having lost seven of their last ten games.
Midfielder Joss Labadie, meanwhile, is serving a ten-game ban for biting Chesterfield’s Ollie Banks and on-loan Brighton striker Shamir Goodwin will also be suspended after his red card during Saturday’s 1-0 home defeat to Newport.
Manager Chris Hargreaves could, as a result, recall five-goal, top scorer Jordan Chappell, even though he has not netted in19 matches since October, while winger Courtney Cameron remains doubtful with a hamstring strain.
But Worthington has warned his team not to take tonight’s visitors lightly.
He said: “Labadie is a big player for them and so is Goodwin but, if we think we are in for an easy night, they will take the three points because they are fighting for their lives. We know what happened with ourselves last season.”