No bounty at County as City fall out of cup -

'GOALS change games' always seems one of the most trite of footballing cliches.

But how apt it seemed last night as York City once again tumbled out of the much-maligned LDV Vans competition at the first time of asking.

For the first 50 minutes the Minstermen, severely disrupted by injury and rocked by two successive defeats in the league, showed plenty of defensive resilience and diligence against their second division opponents to raise the spectre of a cup upset.

It wasn't always palatable but it was highly efficient and effective; the return of the 'grinders' with a smattering of glitter in the shape of Michael Proctor and it was miles better than the fare dished up at Hartlepool just days earlier.

However, once Danny Allsopp fired County in front five minutes into the second half you sensed the game was up for plucky City.

Sure enough, while City have snubbed out their early season tendency to concede early goals they have now reverted to last season's trait of conceding one goal followed quickly by another to put the game out of reach in the blink of an eye.

Six minutes later, County scored their second from the penalty spot and if it looks as if the world is conspiring against the Minstermen at the moment then here was the proof

The penalising of Lee Nogan for handball looked harsh, the ball bobbling up and hitting the City striker on the meeting of shoulder and arm, but it made no difference to former Leeds striker Tony Hackworth who rattled home the penalty with minimum fuss.

Thereafter, and while City produced their own nap hand of decent chances at the death, County could have added more to their tally but for some fine saves from Russ Howarth

It would have been cruel had they done so.

What they lacked in sweeping forays forward they more than made up for in grit and determination.

For long spells, they had to be content with chasing the ball rather than caressing it but throughout a stoic first half they maintained their shape, discipline and concentration.

And for all their possession, County managed to force just one shot on target and when they did, on 25 minutes, Howarth was equal to the task, barring Allsopp's snap shot from six yards with his legs.

City were not without their moments too.

Proctor in particular, with his pace and poise when running at the Magpies defence, caused problems and after firing two good efforts over forced a fine save from Stuart Garden at his near post as the first-half drew to a close.

Having done the hard work it was imperative that City did not concede an early goal at the start of second, only for Allsopp to crush those hopes within minutes of the restart.

It came from a predictable source. Marcel Cas flinging the ball in from the left once too often and, while City half-cleared the danger, when Kevin Nicholson returned the ball Allsopp was on hand to fire home from six yards.

Minutes later and Hackworth doubled the home side's advantage from the spot.

City, now chasing the game, went 4-3-3, replacing Neville Stamp with Alex Mathie and as the Minstermen tried to regroup County threatened to take full advantage.

Cas went closest to grabbing a third, shooting against the post when one on one with Howarth, before City rallied at the death as Mathie saw his goalbound shot hit Nogan and Cooper twice shot wide from good positions.

City Match Facts:

Notts County: Garden, Grayson, Warren, Richardson, Baraclough, Cas, Brough, Caskey (Hamilton 61m), Nicholson (Liburd 52m), Hackworth, Allsopp (Heffernan 85m) Subs, not used: Deeney, Jorgensen

Bookings: None

Sent-off: None

Scorers: Danny Allsop 50, Hackworth (pen) 56

York City: Howarth 8, Maley 6, Smith 7, Hocking 7, Fielding 6, Stamp 5 (Mathie 67m, 6), Cooper 6, Brass 6, Fox 6, Nogan 7, Proctor 7 Subs, not used: Fettis, Basham, Richardson, O'Kane

Bookings: Cooper 17m (dissent), Nogan 57(dissent), Maley 77m (foul)

Sent-off: None

Man of the Match:

Russ Howarth (3pts)

Couldn't be faulted for either goal and made a handful of fine saves to keep the score respectable

Match Facts: County City

Half-time 0 0

Corners 6 11

Shots on target 6 2

Fouls committed 9 12




Richard Beeby (Northampton)