Ex-City ace back as former boss returns north

WELCOME RETURN: Defender Anthony Lloyd

WELCOME RETURN: Defender Anthony Lloyd

First published in Sport York Press: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter

ANTHONY Lloyd has given up his warehouse job for the chance to prove York City made a mistake releasing him last summer.

The 23-year-old full back re-signed for City last week less than four months after leaving the club and joining Blue Square Premier neighbours Farsley Celtic.

But Lloyd was only employed by Farsley on a short-term, part-time basis so jumped at the chance of a return to KitKat Crescent and is determined not to drop out of professional football for a second time.

He said: "I've been in the situation of struggling to find a club a couple of times before but have never had to go part-time. I was working in a warehouse operating machinery which wasn't the best thing I've ever done but it makes you realise what being a footballer means to you.

"It's all I've ever done before and when the manager gave me a call I didn't even have to think about it because it meant getting back into full-time football."

Lloyd admitted, however, that the call from City boss Billy McEwan did shock him slightly having been told that he was free to leave the club back in May.

He said: "I got a call after the Grays game when Mark Robinson was sent off. It was a little bit of a surprise but the manager had been taking notice of whether I was playing at Farsley.

"It had obviously been disappointing not to be given a new contract at the end of last season because I thought I had done a decent job but that's how things go.

"The manager indicated at the time, and has said since, that I was probably the only one he did not want to get rid of but it was for financial reasons and you can't argue with that. We never burned any bridges so there were no problems coming back."

Lloyd played more than 50 games for Huddersfield Town before being recruited by McEwan last summer after a loan spell with Torquay.

He went on to make 36 appearances for the Minstermen during last season's play-off campaign and, despite the departures of top scorer Clayton Donaldson and key midfielder Neal Bishop, Lloyd feels this season's squad is just as strong and has the capabilities of considerably improving their current 19th-placed standing in the table.

The 5ft 7ins defender said: "It's hard for me to compare the two squads because I've only been back here for a week but I've been told the team did not get the breaks during games early in the season and, from what I've seen, there's not a lot of difference between the two sides. There's certainly a lot of character and everybody seems to be working hard."

Lloyd played in both full-back positions for City last season but, with Ben Purkiss and Darren Craddock battling it out on the right, he is likely to be required more as competition for the left-sided Robinson.

Taunton-born Lloyd also played as Farsley's left back in the Leeds club's first three fixtures of the season before losing his place after a 5-1 defeat at Cambridge United.

But he does not state a preference when asked where he would rather play, saying: "The manager and all the fans know I can play either side and whichever position takes the manager's fancy won't bother me. I'm just aiming at getting my shirt and keeping it.

"We've picked up a few decent results so we've got to keep that run going.

"I will do my best to help and I know I've got to work hard to get back in the team."

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