YORK CITY boss Jackie McNamara believes today's League Two clash with Stevenage is a must win game for his struggling outfit.
Describing the encounter as "massive" and "crucial", the former Dundee United chief said a three point haul was vital for the confidence of the players, the mentality at the club and for the fans.
City host a Stevenage outfit without a win in seven matches and McNamara has urged his men to take the game to the opposition as they bid to climb off the bottom of the table.
"It's a massive game for us and I think we need to win it," he said. "Obviously it's not the downfall if we don't but I think it is important game for us - for our mentality, confidence-wise and everything else at home.
"I think our home games are going to be crucial for us."
"You could say the same about ourselves," he added when quizzed on Stevenage's recent struggles.
"It's a game we have to win. We are at home. There are 20 games left and this is a crucial game for us and we need to get three points."
Asked what it would take to get on top, NcNamara explained: "We have watched all the footage and seen their strengths and weaknesses and, hopefully, we will go and exploit that.
"First of all you have to match the opposition. You have to set about it in the right way rather than sitting and waiting for them to come and attack you.
"You have to go on the front foot and make sure the ball sticks up front. I think that was the big difference between the two sides in the last game in the first half.
"The ball was sticking with their forwards and they were causing us problems."
The City chief revealed he had talked with striker Vadaine Oliver about better retention of the ball - but stressed the responsibility also lay with all the forwards and not just the former Lincoln and Crewe marksman.
"I had a good chat on Monday about it," McNamara added. "It's just putting across so he understands the importance of ball retention up there - so we can get up as a team.
"It's not just Vadaine, it would be unfair just to single out Vadaine. (Ntumba) Massanka started with him and the other lads that come in, the likes of Bradley Fewster or other strikers, it is important that the ball sticks and we play as a team."
McNamara said midfielder James Berrett has come back into the squad after returning to training following his absence from the Carlisle game with an ankle injury, while also stressing that attacker Danny Galbraith was in good shape after a groin problem.
On Oliver, he added: "Vadaine, we will see how he is. He has got a little bang on his knee but, hopefully, he should be okay."