LEWIS Alessandra realises he can become a York City “hero” if he scores the goals to keep the club in the Sky Bet Football League.

The on-loan Rochdale forward is set to make his full debut in this afternoon’s home match against Barnet with the Bootham Crescent outfit five points adrift of safety and third-bottom Hartlepool also boasting three games in hand.

Prior to seeing opportunities limited at League One Dale following a summer move, Alessandra had plundered 25 goals in two seasons for Plymouth and, on the chance to write himself in City folklore, the 27-year-old attacker said: “I’ve not played a great deal of football so, as soon as York were interested, I was happy to come here.

“I know the situation but, if I didn’t believe we could get out of it, I wouldn’t have come and we’ve got to give ourselves a chance going into those last couple of games. You have to play under pressure at times as a professional footballer and I am here to score and create goals for York City.

“I’ve already spoken to my partner and said, if I can do that and help keep York stay up, I could be the hero.”

Ex-Morecambe attacker Alessandra also knows what is needed to get angry City supporters back on side following the ugly scenes at the end of last weekend’s 1-0 defeat at Dagenham.

“My game is all about giving 100 per cent and closing down because I know even a tackle can spur the crowd on and then everybody bounces off each other,” he reasoned.

Alessandra also agrees with City boss Jackie McNamara that his talents are best utilised as a centre forward rather than on the flanks, where he has patrolled during periods of his career.

“I’ll play out wide if asked but I’ve always played my best football down the middle and that’s where I want to play,” he declared. “I want to be a striker and I was for the majority of my time at Plymouth, where I felt I showed in my performances that I was a better forward than a wide player.”