Buoyant York City were today celebrating one of their happiest Mondays.

FLOOR SHOW: City defender Mark Sertori gets to grips with Brighton's Darren Freeman as team-mates Steve Agnew, Wayne Hall and Chris Fairclough look on

Added to a rise five places up the Division Three table following their 1-0 win at Brighton, City also banked another £100,000 as part of the lucrative deal that took Jonathan Greening to Manchester United.

Greening's appearance as a 71st-minute replacement for Welsh superstar Ryan Giggs in United's 4-1 destruction of Watford was his tenth senior outing for the Red Devils since his move from City 20 months ago.

Under the terms of the deal - first revealed in the Evening Press - City netted an initial £350,000 to be followed by ten more cash payments of £100,000 for every five games played for the first team up to 50 appearances. That would eventually realise a total fee of £1.35million.

The 20-year-old Greening completed his first ten - much to City's satisfaction - on Saturday at Old Trafford, where it was a challenge on the young forward that led to Watford's centre-back Mark Williams being dealt a red card.

So the second £100,000 payment is due to wing its way across the Pennines into City's bank account, manager Neil Thompson adding: "Good luck to Jonno. The more successful he becomes, the better for us."

The Minstermen meanwhile have to fend off a goal ace from the recent past if they are to net even more cash from a run in the FA Cup.

City were paired against Nationwide Conference club Hereford United in the first round of the FA Cup, the tie to be played at the Bulls' Edgar Street stadium on Saturday, October 30.

It will be the second time the two clubs have met in the competition.

Their first pairing was back in January 1976 when City beat the Bulls 2-1 at Bootham Crescent with goals from Jimmy Seal and Bobby Hosker in a third round tie. City then perished 2-0 at home to Chelsea in the fourth round.

City's main threat to progress this time will likely be one-time Hull City danger-man Paul Fewings.

The 21-year-old striker, who now leads the Bulls' front-line, scored one of his only two League goals in 57 appearances with the Tigers when Hull won 1-0 at Bootham Crescent in December 1995.

Fewings, believed to be in line for a promising League career as a teenager, was on target for Hereford in their 4-1 fourth round qualifying victory over Burgess Hill to earn the crack against the Minstermen.

City boss Thompson forecast a tough exchange adding that the Conference was virtually a 'fifth division' of the Football League.

He said he would likely to sound out Scarborough boss Colin Addison for a low-down on Hereford, the Bulls recently sharing a 4-4 draw at home to the Seasiders.

"We will gather as much information as we can about Hereford and we will be ready for what promises to be a very tough tie as this is their cup final," said the City manager.

Matt goes from zero to hero

Jeers turned to cheers for York City's newest hero Matt Hocking, but he pledged to win over the boo-boys, writes Tony Kelly.

In one of the most astonishing reversals of fortune in City's season Hocking was hailed a match-winner a fortnight after City critics savaged him out of the team.

The 21-year-old defender was consigned to a watching brief after he was victimised by the sneers of the terraces in the abominable 2-2 draw with Chester.

But he crowned his sudden comeback with a last-gasp winner at Brighton, which spirited the Minstermen to their second successive triumph and five places up the Division Three rankings.

Manager Neil Thompson and team-mates alike swamped the modest Hocking in a free-for-all outburst of celebration at his strike, which sealed City's first away win of the campaign.

The small band of fans who made the 280-mile pilgrimage to the Seagulls' Withdean Stadium base could barely believe it. Hocking too was incredulous.

"It still hasn't sunk in yet, but it was a brilliant moment to see the ball finally hit the net," said the player, dragged out of the senior spotlight two weeks earlier for his own protection by City boss Thompson.

But while he was overjoyed at his winner - his third senior goal, but his first in York colours - he affirmed his desire to prove to his critics that he was worthy of a first-team place.

"I've just got to show to the fans that I am committed to York City and I have to prove that I am worthy of playing in the first team on a regular basis," said Hocking.

"The manager has given me the chance to stake a claim here and I've signed a three-year contract because I want to stay at York and play my best for them.

"I've just moved into a flat in York and it's a lovely city in which to live. All I want to do is get the supporters on my side, because I want to play well for the club."

Hocking admitted that the barracking meted out to him on his last outing at Bootham Crescent had drained him of confidence in the game against Chester.

He added: "It was a big shock as I've never had that before from my own supporters. I lost a lot of confidence, but I intend not to let it happen again."

Sprung into action three minutes from time for Marc Williams Hocking was determined to use his pace to stretch the Brighton defence to try to keep the pressure away from City's rearguard.

A striker while an under-14 player he took his stoppage-time chance in style. "I knew I could get past the defender and I could see the 'keeper coming out so I hit it over him.

"I caught the ball well, but then I wondered whether I'd hit it too hard. It took ages to finally go in. It was an absolutely fantastic feeling."

City boss Thompson was delighted for his match-winner.

"He's had a lot of stick, which has been unjust and I took him out of the team for his own protection," he said. "I was not going to let him be subjected to what he went through. Matt has shown a lot of heart to come back and I am really pleased for him."

City captain Chris Fairclough, whose header freed Hocking for his goal, added: "It's a dream for him, a fairy-tale.

"The stick he has been getting has been unwarranted and totally out of order, so for him to come on and get the winner was superb."

Clean sheet bonus

City's on-field leader Chris Fairclough outlined a stern case for the defence to underpin a rise from trouble.

The elegant centre-back was at the heart of a determined rearguard action that blunted a bruising approach from Brighton.

Fairclough ventured City now had to maintain that ruggedness to try to turn the season around.

"It was a battle from start to finish with Brighton hurling a lot at us, especially during the first-half. But though we were under a lot of pressure we managed to hold out and keep a clean sheet, which was a bonus as we have been conceding goals far too easily."

The City captain revealed he would have been happy to come away from Brighton with a point to follow on from last week's long-awaited win over Leyton Orient.

"It's a long journey here, but it's a great journey back when you come away with the three points."

Delighted manager Neil Thompson saluted the entire City backline for ensuring a return of at least parity from the long haul to the south coast.

"We are three games unbeaten now, and one defeat in the last six. Brighton are a big strong side, but I believe our lads are slowly getting used to what they have to do. It's taken time, but that's the nature of the business.

"I'm not saying we are there yet, because we are not. We could have played better, it was a bitty and scrappy match and sometimes we gave the ball away too cheaply.

"But with the likes of Scott Jordan and Steve Agnew passing well in midfield, we now have a good mix."

Thompson was today making a check on the fitness of strikers Anthony Ormerod (hamstring) and John Williams ('flu') before tomorrow's crunch trip to Halifax Town.

However, while he was delighted with the spirit of his side, Brighton boss Mickey Adams took a swipe at City's tactics.

Fumed Adams: "They have come for a 0-0 and pulled a lot of men behind the ball. That's the way they have set their stall out and we fell for a sucker punch. That hurts."

Converted for the new archive on 30 June 2000. Some images and formatting may have been lost in the conversion.