YORK City manager Nigel Worthington hailed his team’s “character” after they fought back to draw 2-2 at promoted Scunthorpe.
Goals by Ryan Brobbel and Calvin Andrew cancelled out earlier efforts from Iron pair Paddy Madden and Terry Hawkridge to extend the Minstermen’s unbeaten run to a 17th game.
Worthington’s team will now prepare for a two-legged, play-off semi-final against Fleetwood with the first match at Bootham Crescent on Saturday night, kick-off 7.30pm.
The return fixture, meanwhile, will be held at Highbury on Friday, May 16, kick-off 7.45pm.
But, on the performance that concluded City’s regular season, Worthington said: “I thought we were off the pace a bit in the first half. We allowed Scunthorpe to pass the ball far too easily, so we mentioned one word at half-time – character.
“It’s a bit easier when you are 1-0 up to keep a clean sheet and get a result as we have been doing but, when you go two down, you look for character in your team and that shone through in bundles during a magnificent second half. We were trying things in that first half that we don’t normally do and can’t do so we asked the players to simplify everything and step up their game in the second half.
“We pushed them back, pressed and pressed and won no end of corners. We also had a couple of very good half chances and I was delighted that we came back to draw 2-2 because the biggest thing was to keep the unbeaten run going.”
City were also cheered on by just under 1,400 fans in North Lincolnshire and a grateful Worthington added: “Our support was unbelievable.
“I can’t thank them enough. We are always delighted to see our home supporters but the people who travel the length and breadth of the country and give up their time and pay for tickets deserve great credit and are a big part of what’s going on at the club.”
On his team’s next challenge, Worthington said: “It’s all about dealing with Fleetwood now. That will involve preparing right mentally to handle the situation and we will be getting to work on that first thing Monday morning.”