York City players lifted by words of manager Nigel Worthington
CALVIN Andrew has revealed how York City manager Nigel Worthington helped him and his team-mates back up off the floor following Saturday's stoppage-time agony against Accrington.
The City chief put his own frustration at dropping two points to one side, as he addressed his demoralised players in the dressing room following Shay McCartan's 91st-minute equaliser.
Instead, Worthington offered a reminder of how far the team has travelled since the turn of the year and made sure all minds were looking forward to Good Friday's away meeting with play-off rivals Oxford, rather than stewing on the 1-1 draw with Stanley.
There were no tea cups thrown or finger-pointing from the ex-Northern Ireland and Norwich boss and 27-year-old striker Andrew, who made his full City debut in the game, believes that was exactly the right approach to reinvigorate the squad ahead of a crucial Easter programme.
He said: "As we all walked off the pitch, we felt disappointed at conceding so late in the game but, once we got in the changing room, the manager said a few words and it was heads-up time. That was important because it's only natural you feel deflated but, after the manager said his bits and pieces, we were confident and ready to go again.
"It was a point towards where we want to be and we are still in with a shout so we have to be confident going into the next few games and we will now go to Oxford and give it our best."
Andrew added that completing a full match for the first time since Boxing Day, when he played in a 3-0 defeat for previous club Mansfield at Rochdale, was a psychological boost for himself.
"A full 90 minutes was what I needed because it's been a good few months," he admitted. "The manager knew that I could get through 60 or 70 minutes quite comfortably and I am reasonably fit now.
"Those last 20 minutes were just what I needed and I know it's all in the tank now. You always want to be out on the pitch being part of something, so I was very pleased to get a start.
"It's difficult coming into a team that's doing so well and I was glad the manager felt confident enough to start me in the game. I was aching afterwards and not walking too comfortably but that's all part and parcel of the game.
"I look after myself and I will be ready for Friday. As a footballer, all you want to do is play and, hopefully, I can help contribute towards something great now."
Andrew has only managed one goal in his last 29 outings but thought he had got off the mark in his first start for City only to narrowly miss the target on 42 minutes.
On that chance, he recalled: "I am sure any striker would claim a shot was going in but it would have gone in the far corner before the deflection, which was a shame, but we almost scored from the corner and I just want to be part of something."
The 6ft 2in forward was also encouraged with the manner in which he and Michael Coulson performed as striking partners but insisted that he should not solely be regarded as an attacking foil or target man for his new club.
"Myself and Couls work on bits and pieces in training and the partnership feels very comfortable," Andrew reasoned. "He's a top lad and somebody I will enjoy playing with if I am called upon again.
"It looks like the classic big man, little man set-up but, as I get into things, I will show more in terms of running at people and going past them to show I can do a bit myself."
Andrew is also daring to contemplate a glorious end to a difficult season personally.
The Luton-born striker, who once played for his home town, Crystal Palace and Millwall in the Championship, was without a club for more than two months prior to joining the Minstermen in March having been released by Mansfield early in the new year.
He is now targeting a career first, however, as City hunt down a Sky Bet League Two top-seven spot with four games to play.
"I have had an up-and-down season and I've never played at Wembley so to finish it there with a medal around my neck would be wonderful," Andrew confessed.
City are Andrew's 11th club, including six loan spells as a professional and he has finished the last four seasons with different sides.
On whether he sees a future beyond his short-term contract at Bootham Crescent, he said: "I am just taking every day as it comes. I get on very well with the players and staff so it will be a case of seeing how the end to this season goes and taking things from there."
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