NIGEL Worthington told his York City side not to be despondent after their stoppage-time agony against Accrington Stanley.
The Minstermen were denied three points when Stanley substitute Shay McCartan headed in Lee Molyneux’s 91st-minute corner to earn the visitors a 1-1 draw.
His goal, which cancelled out Michael Coulson’s penalty just past the hour, saw City drop out of the Sky Bet League Two play-off places but Worthington has instructed his players to bounce back during Friday’s crucial trip to promotion rivals Oxford.
He said: “There is no need to be depressed. We are in a fantastic position and the point could be a very important one.
“There’s no doubt that we dropped two. That’s there for everyone to see but it was another solid performance full of energy and commitment.
“I have told the players you get disappointments in this game and it’s all about how you recover from them. There is nothing to be ashamed of and there is still everything to play for.
“We have had a terrific season and are still unbeaten in 13 games. Accrington are fighting for their lives and did exactly the same to us last season with the equaliser.
“But we have got to get our heads up, put smiles on our faces and get ready for Oxford. We have been fantastic since the turn of the year and we will be giving our utmost until the end of the season whenever that may be.
“To still have a keen interest in what’s going on in the play offs is a great achievement for everybody at the club.”
Worthington also felt there was a touch of fortune about Accrington’s last-gasp leveller, adding: “It was a funny corner and I think their lad might have mishit it.
“He didn’t seem to catch it right and it misled everybody but these things happen in football. We knew there would be twists and turns along the way and that was one of them.”
With Coulson on target from the spot, however, the Minstermen have now failed to net in open play for just under seven-and-a-half hours and Worthington is calling on his side to start converting more opportunities.
“We have got to become ruthless,” he admitted. “When the ball is travelling across the face of goal, we should have bodies flying in to get it across the line and, if we do that, then it will drop for us.”
Coulson, however, became the fourth City player to score a penalty this season following on from Ryan Jarvis, Wes Fletcher and Ryan Bowman and Worthington said: “It takes courage to step up and he slotted it away very, very well.”
Having gone 15 games without a goal from open play, Bowman was replaced by Calvin Andrew, meanwhile, in the City starting line-up and Worthington was encouraged by the ex-Mansfield striker’s full debut, saying: “I thought he was a real handful.
“He won his headers and is a big unit who gets hold of the ball and allows the rest of the team to get upfield. Michael Coulson was feeding off him and he did very well to get through 90 minutes.
“But he looks after himself and we have players who are prepared to go through the pain barrier to get the pleasure. I thought he was ready for a start and I wanted to freshen things up.”