York City v Fleetwood: Lowe to bench bad memories

York Press: Keith Lowe, above right, alongside John McCombe as the pair bid to quell the danger-men of Fleetwood and keep the Minstermen’s Wembley dream alive and kicking Keith Lowe, above right, alongside John McCombe as the pair bid to quell the danger-men of Fleetwood and keep the Minstermen’s Wembley dream alive and kicking

KEITH Lowe is determined to erase the memory of sitting on the bench during his one previous trip to Wembley as a player.

The 28-year-old York City defender was an unused substitute when former club Cheltenham lost to Crewe in the 2012 Sky Bet League Two play-off final despite playing every minute of the Robins' two semi-final ties against Torquay.

He went on to miss out on a second chance of running out at the world-famous national stadium last May when Cheltenham were beaten over two legs by Northampton and is, unsurprisingly, hungry to make this season's play-off bid with the Minstermen a case of third time lucky.

Recalling his past disappointment, Lowe said: "It's all behind me now but it was difficult to watch that final from the bench and tough to take after playing in both semi-finals. I want to play at Wembley just as much as anybody else, so I definitely want to put that right.

"Hopefully, I will get my chance and go one better than Cheltenham did two years ago."

The former Wolves, QPR and Swansea centre-back, meanwhile, admitted that the excitement generated in the city this week has eclipsed anything he experienced during his past two tilts at promotion with Cheltenham.

"I have never been at a club where the buzz and enthusiasm for the play-offs has been so high," he confessed. "Even before the play-offs, we were getting almost a thousand fans for long-distance away games.

"The support has been massive and it will be again on Saturday. The queues we have seen outside the ticket office this week remind you that everything in York at the minute is about these play-off games.

"As players, we are really looking forward to them and are hoping to put on a show to reward everybody. For me, personally, it's brilliant to be involved in the play-offs again.

"A massive hype surrounds them and they are really big games."

As he prepares for his third successive shot at promotion to League One via the play-offs, Lowe also believes the key to success will lie in approaching the games no differently to any other since his arrival in North Yorkshire during mid-November.

City will tackle Fleetwood on the back of a 17-match unbeaten run and Lowe pointed out: " We must work hard, stick to the gameplan and go about our business in the same manner that we have been doing since I've been at the club."

Lowe was a member of the City side that snatched a 2-1 win at Fleetwood through Wes Fletcher's stoppage-time goal back in February and he is predicting two more close contests, suggesting: "It will be tough.

"They are a good team who have been up there all season. We had a hard game against them away from home and I think it will be another tight encounter."

Lowe also revealed that the first goals the team have shipped from open play for that 17-game sequence without a defeat - during last weekend's 2-2 draw at Scunthorpe - have had little impact on the team's defensive confidence.

He reasoned: "We were always going to concede a couple of goals eventually . That happens at every club but what was pleasing is we reacted really well and kept a clean sheet in the second half, while the lads pulled a couple of goals out of the bag as well."


Match facts

FLEETWOOD lost on their first visit to Bootham Crescent in February 2011 with Jamie Reed scoring in a 1-0 City success, but they have won on their three subsequent trips without conceding a goal.

In 2011/12, when both clubs won promotion from the Conference, Richard Brodie, above, was their marksman in a 1-0 scoreline and in the two Football League meetings between the clubs here Town have triumphed 2-0.

The fixture earlier this season was staged on October 26, 2013 and City lined up: Ingham, Oyebanjo (Fletcher), McGurk (Allan), Parslow, Davies, Montrose, Carson, O’Neill, Whitehouse, Brobbel, Jarvis (Bowman).

Along with Brodie other players to have appeared for both clubs include Jon Parkin, Peter Till, Scott Brown and Matty Blair.

This is City’s sixth involvement in promotion play offs and their third in the Football League.

The fiirst occasion was in1992/93 when City played the second leg of the semi-final at home and the other four times the first leg was staged at Bootham Crescent.

The record of the games at home is:

1992/93 Bury W 1-0 att: 9,206

1993/94 Stockport D 0-0 att: 8,744

2006/07 Morecambe D 0-0 att: 6,660

2009/10 Luton W 1-0 att: 6,204

2011/12 Mansfield D 1-1 att: 6,067

It happened on May 10

1947: City lost at home 4-1 to Hartlepools United in Division Three North watched by a crowd of 4,514 with Len Butt the scorer. Owing to the bad winter City still had eight games to play and the season did not finish until June 7.

1966: A 3-0 defeat at Oldham Athletic and with two games remaining City were bottom of the Third Division (League One) and doomed to relegation.

Compiled by David Batters

Comments (1)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:49pm Fri 9 May 14

RooBeck says...

This guy is the "business"!! What a very good footballer and such a strong presence in the City defence! An inspired signing by NW and let's all hope that Keith fronts a successful ending to our season, leading us to League 1 football in August!! COYR.
This guy is the "business"!! What a very good footballer and such a strong presence in the City defence! An inspired signing by NW and let's all hope that Keith fronts a successful ending to our season, leading us to League 1 football in August!! COYR. RooBeck
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree