YORK City boss Russ Wilcox has defended his side's record against opposition corners.

The correct way to line up for flag kicks has come under scrutiny this week after Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League by headers from Paris St Germain pair David Luiz and Thiago Silva.

Jose Mourinho chose not to have a player defending the posts in both incidences while City chief Wilcox saw his team concede at AFC Wimbledon from a corner in their last outing after going without a man on both uprights.

But the studious ex-Scunthorpe boss has placed that goal in context ahead of Saturday's home game with Carlisle, saying: "Every club sets up differently for corners.

"Both the goals Chelsea conceded went in at the near post, whereas ours at Wimbledon went in at the far post. We are always analysing and, if you look at the stats, we have only conceded two goals from the 90 corners we have faced in the last 15 games.

"You don't want to concede from any but that's pretty decent and I'm quite happy with our set-up. Newport have conceded seven from corners in their last 15 games, which is really surprising because they're a big team.

"Cambridge have also conceded five and, perhaps most interestingly, Oxford have let in four during that time and they do put a man on the far post. If it was as simple as just putting a man on the far post to stop conceding from corners, then everybody would do it.

"We sacrifice that a bit to have a space marker centrally and we put Josh Carson in front of the kicker to affect the corner taker. He did that superbly well at Cambridge and that can also get you counter attacking quickly too.

"When a goal is conceded at corners, it's usually more down to an individual not doing their job properly. You have to get touch tight on your men and make the first contact on the ball in your box.

"Some teams send six men up so you need to mark them. There are only two teams in the division who haven't conceded from a corner in the last 15 games and they are Burton and Portsmouth.

"They are both on good runs and maybe haven't given away as many."

City , currently 20th in the Sky Bet League Two standings, will play host to a Carlisle team just one place below them in the table on goal difference and Wilcox is fully aware of the significance of a victory.

"It's not a make or break game and won't decide anything because there will still be ten games left to play, but it's an important one for both sides without a doubt," he reasoned. "If one team wins, they will go three points clear of the other and, if results go their way elsewhere, they could be looking up instead of down."

Wilcox has told his players to prepare for a "hot and spicy" start before looking to capitalise on the visitors' habit of shipping goals.

"I am sure it will be frantic for the first ten minutes," he pointed out. "Games like these usually are.

"It will be hot and spicy and we've then got to try and stamp our game on Carlisle. They have the worst defensive record in the division and have conceded 61 goals.

"We are at home, so our game plan is to take the game to them. That's the challenge I am setting."

A six-point gap has now opened up between City and sixth-bottom Mansfield but Wilcox does not believe the fight for Football League survival is down to five teams.

"A few more could still be dragged into it because everybody will be playing each other," he reasoned. "It surprises me that Tranmere are in the bottom two and it would do if they stay there, but I was also flabbergasted when Bristol Rovers went down last season.

"Nobody is safe and it doesn't matter what the name of your club is. People might think Hartlepool are down but Northampton looked dead and buried last season and survived.

"The bottom clubs often start picking up points now as the top teams start to get nervy."

Diego De Girolamo has made a full recovery from food poisoning and will be in contention for Saturday's game but Luke Summerfield might need to wait until next week as he continues his comeback from a thigh injury.

Defender Dave Winfield, meanwhile, will be given permission to extend his 28-day loan at AFC Wimbledon but only on the understanding that he can be recalled to North Yorkshire if needed before the end of the season.

Wilcox also remains on the lookout for striking reinforcements following the news Wes Fletcher will be ruled out for six weeks with a torn hamstring muscle.

"We have got to make sure we don't leave ourselves short for the eight games after the loan deadline," the Minstermen boss explained.

Wilcox is currently running the rule over former Sheffield Wednesday youth-team captain and Northern Ireland under-19 midfielder Simon Hanna, although any move is unlikely to happen before the end of the season with the player still contracted to the Owls.

"Simon has trained with us this week because he's been told he won't be getting a contract at Sheffield Wednesday," Wilcox revealed. "I've watched him a few times and he's impressed me with his tenacity, fitness levels and ability to get around the pitch.

"He's also good on the ball and plays with no fear like Brad Halliday. Even though Sheffield Wednesday don't want him, I'm not sure we will be able to sign him which beggars belief and that needs challenging because that kind of rule stops young players from pursuing their careers.

"I don't think we would take him on loan because we've already got five loans and he might not be ready to go into the first team."