Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
Ace Brodie top of the Rich twist
KNOCKOUT king Richard Brodie could be York City’s lucky FA Trophy omen.
Brodie believes it might be his destiny to win some silverware this season having yet to taste defeat in three cup competitions.
During a loan spell with Barrow, Brodie helped the Holker Street club reach the third round of the FA Cup after scoring goals against Tamworth and Eastbourne.
But, by the time the Cumbrians were travelling to Middlesbrough for a plum tie, Brodie had been recalled to KitKat Crescent by new manager Martin Foyle.
The England ‘C’ international was also on target for Barrow in the Setanta Shield during a 3-1 victory over Gateshead but, again, left before his temporary team-mates went out of the tournament.
As a result, Brodie remains unbeaten in 11 cup games this season, scoring seven goals along the way.
It is no surprise, therefore, he is optimistic about the Minstermen’s Wembley chances a week today.
He said: “It’s been a bit of an indifferent season but I’ve been telling everybody I should still be in the FA Cup and the Setanta Shield as I haven’t been knocked out of either competition and, obviously now, the big prize is the FA Trophy with York.
“The semi-final defeat last season was disappointing and, to get to the final is an achievement in itself, but nobody remembers the losers. I definitely want to win it and will be 100 per cent up for it.
“You have to give Stevenage massive respect. They are strong in all positions and the table doesn’t lie.
“They are solid at the back and Steve Morison has scored a lot of goals up front. A lot of Football League clubs are looking at him but we are a good side as well.
“We have to believe we have got the ability and people who can score goals. There’s no reason why we can’t go out and beat them on the day.”
Brodie has netted 19 times for City this season and also fired in four during his one-month spell at Barrow, taking his tally to 23 in a satisfying campaign.
As he looks forward to concluding the season at the most famous stadium in the world, however, he still has a couple of landmarks in sight.
He said: “I should have had a couple more goals this season, as should the rest of the players but the main thing is we have been creating chances recently and been in the right positions to miss them which bodes well for the final.
“It would be nice to get my 20th goal for York at Wembley.
“At the start of the season, I didn’t make any targets but, once you get to 20, you think it would be nice to become a 25-goal striker as well.
“It’s the best feeling in the world to score a goal anywhere but to get one at Wembley would be a dream come true.”
Brodie has already had a taste of what to expect on May 9, as part of a small City party that visited the stadium last week.
Special moments included a tour of the changing-rooms, a visit to the royal box and walking out of the players’ tunnel.
Standing pitch side, the former Northern League forward also expressed his surprise at the recent criticism of the playing surface.
He added: “It’s been very hard putting Wembley to the back of our minds because of the league position we were in and, walking to the ground from the train station every day, I was thinking about it every spare moment. Going there last week, it was hard to take it all in.
“There’s so much to see and so much you want to do. It will be absolutely fantastic to play there. It’s every schoolboy’s dream.
“When I walked out of the tunnel, the hairs on the back of my neck stood up and I can’t imagine what it will be like with your team-mates when it matters.
“I can’t understand the complaints about the pitch either. Those guys are top pros but, from where I was standing, it looked like a carpet and a bit different to what we are used to playing on every week.
“I’ve played at the Riverside and Reebok stadiums when I was younger but Wembley is a different level to all of them.
“If you can’t enjoy yourself on that pitch, there’s no point being in the game.”
It will certainly prove a stark contrast to Northwich’s Victoria Stadium, where City’s Trophy trail began on a windy night in December.
As one of five players to start all seven Trophy games, Brodie has his several highlights from the run, starting with that freezing first round tie.
He said: “There was a crowd of 300 at Northwich but I scored two goals there to set us on our way. We then had a hard game at Oxford and I got the winner in a 2-1 victory.
“To score a penalty in the shoot-out against Kidderminster just after missing one at Altrincham was also a big moment for me in the season.
“It was nice to get the third goal in the semi-final, second leg against Telford as well because the tie was still dicey until then.
“Hopefully, I can top it off at Wembley now.”