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Self-inflicted wounds critical to York City's Barnet flop
JOHN McGrath believes York City are just as good as the promotion-challenging Burton Albion team he has left behind.
The Brewers are currently 13 points and 15 places above City in the League Two standings but on-loan midfielder McGrath still remembers how Gary Mills’ men dismantled his parent club 3-0 on New Year’s Day.
McGrath played the final five minutes of that match – the Minstermen’s last victory – and, two games into his Bootham Crescent career, can see no reason why the team cannot hit the same heights again.
He said: “What we have in our dressing room here is as good as what Burton Albion have got. It’s just that little bit of luck that is eluding us.
“I came to York with Burton on New Year’s Day and I remember going away and thinking ‘wow, that’s a very, very good team’. Whether or not a bit of confidence is lacking now, I don’t know.
“But they are the same group of players and the likes of myself, Curtis Obeng, Michael Rankine and Jack O’Connell have been added to the team. We should be good enough to challenge any team in this League.”
McGrath admitted, however, that Saturday’s 2-1 home defeat to Barnet was partly self-inflicted by a failure to carry out the manager’s orders on the pitch.
He added: “The gaffer’s mentality is to press high up the pitch, win the ball and play in the opposition’s half but we seemed to drop off after they scored. I don’t know whether that was down to us, as midfielders, sitting back or the back four not pushing up.
“It was probably a collective thing and we’ve got to learn from that.”
The 32-year-old Irishman went on to describe a “broken” dressing room at the end of the game but one that is resolving to put matters right at Oxford on Saturday.
He said: “The changing room was full of broken lads who thought they should have won the game (on Saturday) and I was one of them. It was a game that was there for the taking after going 1-0 up early doors and they did not have many chances.
“I held my hand up for the throw in that led to their winning goal but their player still had half the pitch to go before scoring. We would have been disappointed to draw the game but we ended up dropping three points.
“We’ve just got to put things right on the training ground now and prepare for another tough fixture.”