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Michael Ingham fit for York City's play-off game against Mansfield Town
YORK City goalkeeper Michael Ingham has won his battle to be fit for tonight’s Blue Square Bet Premier play-off semi-final first leg against Mansfield Town.
The 31-year-old has recovered from the shin injury that has kept him out of the final three matches of the regular season and will replace Paul Musselwhite, who kept clean sheets in each of that trio of matches, at Bootham Crescent tonight.
But Lanre Oyebanjo will not be risked, with City boss Gary Mills saying the defender is “not quite ready”. Oyebanjo, who has been absent with a hamstring strain since the win at Cambridge, is expected to have recovered in time for Monday’s second leg at Field Mill.
Mills said: “Michael Ingham has trained on Monday and Tuesday so he is looking no problem for tonight and that is a big, big bonus for us.
“He has been consistently good for this football club. I know all the games he has played for this club and he now has another opportunity to help this football club to become a league club.
“I am hoping that’s enough for him to go out there and show what he is about.
“If it was Paul Musselwhite then I wouldn’t be concerned. I keep saying he’s the coolest man at the football club and his experience has shown through in the last three games.
“But it is nice to have Inghy back, of course it is. He will be glad to be back and what a game to come back into.”
Mills has some interesting team selection quandries, particularly at centre-back – with Chris Smith, Chris Doig and Dan Parslow fighting for just two berths – and also in midfield. But, as usual, he will not tell his squad his starting 11 until two hours before kick-off.
“There will be a few changes (from Saturday’s 1-0 win over Forest Green),” he added. “I rested some of the ‘big players’ for me this season. The front three are looking a lot better in the last few games and it’s nice to have all of them ready and available.
“I have got a couple of big decisions to make. I’ve made those in my mind and the players will know two hours before kick-off. That’s the way I do it and it won’t change.”
Meanwhile, tonight’s match at Bootham Crescent, which kicks off at 7.30pm, may yet become all-ticket.
A club statement, yesterday afternoon, said that while the game was not all-ticket at the moment, that situation would change if Mansfield sold out their entire allocation and “ticket sales for home support continue in the same vein”.
“With this in mind, the strong recommendation to supporters would be to purchase tickets before 5pm (today) to avoid disappointment,” the club stated.
Crescent play-off clean sheets
1992/93 1-0 v Bury (second leg)
1993/94 0-0 v Stockport County
2006/07 0-0 v Morecambe
2009/10 1-0 v Luton Town
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