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York City’s Matty Blair declares himself fit for Dagenham & Redbridge match
Matty Blair has recovered from being crocked by a football mannequin to declare himself fit for York City’s home clash with Dagenham & Redbridge tomorrow.
The City attacker required stitches to a knee wound after colliding with the coaching aid, normally used for practising free-kicks, at the club’s Wigginton Road training base this week.
But Blair is expected to line up for the Minstermen in a midfield role again against the Daggers alongside Scott Kerr and Danny Kearns.
On the unusual injury, chuckling City boss Gary Mills said: “Matty Blair got tackled by a mannequin and ended up with a gash in his knee. He stumbled into it after tangling with Michael Potts and had to have stitches in his knee.
“I think he’s the first footballer ever to be injured by a mannequin and he’s had a fair bit of ribbing but he will be fine for tomorrow.”
Other than long-term casualty John McReady, right-back Lanre Oyebanjo will be the only injury absentee for the visit of John Still’s men but his thigh problem is subsiding.
Said Mills: “Lanre is doing a lot better. He’s been running with the physio and will hopefully be back in full-time training next week.”
Mills is also confident that his players can record their first win in six home matches tomorrow.
He said: “The result is more important at home now because the performances have been OK. I want both because the performance is always important but the result is vital.
“If there’s been an issue, it’s turning the chances we create into goals.
“It’s a challenge for me to put that right as manager and we have to thrive on that.
“We’ve not got to go out worrying that we’re not going to win and I feel confident that we will win tomorrow.”
Despite drawing two and losing one of their last three League Two contests, City have also remained in 14th place after all of those games and are still just four points adrift of the play-off positions.
On his team’s current league standing, Mills added: “I’m happy where we are. I would love to be sitting top with a lot more points but, sometimes, that’s dream world and not reality.
“A win against Dagenham can move us up a few places again and it’s early days.
“We just have to make sure we are where we need to be at the end of April.”
Mills added that centre-back Clarke Carlisle’s duties as Professional Footballers’ Association chairman, in the wake of the Serbian racism row, have not interfered with his club commitments prior to tomorrow’s game.
“We’ve all seen him on the television this week but he has been in doing the job he gets paid for as well,” the City chief said.
“I just have to ask him sometimes what some of those big words mean.”