NATIONAL League North’s worst defence will arrive at York City having kept back-to-back clean sheets for the first time this campaign.

Ashton United have conceded 62 goals in 2018/19 – one more than bottom-of-the-table Nuneaton – but Jody Banim’s men have enjoyed 1-0 triumphs over the latter and FC United of Manchester during their last two fixtures.

The two sides are the only teams below third-bottom Ashton in the table, with the Hurst Cross outfit lying four points from safety despite also securing consecutive wins for the only occasion this term.

Prior to tackling their relegation rivals, United had not managed a shut-out in their previous ten contests and have failed to keep any side above the bottom-seven positions off the scoresheet, only mustering five league clean sheets in the process.

Last season’s Northern Premier League play-off winners have conceded three or more goals, meanwhile, in 11 matches during the current campaign, including heavy defeats to Stockport (6-0), Boston (5-0 in the FA Trophy), Chorley (5-0), Spennymoor (5-0), Brackley (5-1) and Chester (4-1).

Furthermore, along with Bradford Park Avenue, Ashton’s games have witnessed the most goals in the division, as 94 have gone in at both ends of the pitch with the latter having played one game fewer than the West Yorkshire promotion contenders.

The Robins’ goal tally on the road of 22 also represents National League North’s seventh-highest haul and they have netted four times twice on their 2018/19 travels, prevailing 4-3 at FC United of Manchester and 4-2 against Curzon Ashton.

Former Salford City left winger Matthew Chadwick is the Greater Manchester team’s leading marksman with nine goals in all competitions this season, although he was only used as a half-time sub during last weekend’s 1-0 win at Nuneaton and has hit the target in just one of the last 17 league games since the end of September - bagging a brace on Boxing Day against Curzon Ashton.

But seven of Chadwick’s eight league goals have been scored away from home.

Fellow winger Brad Jackson is this season’s second-top marksman on six goals, but he left for Chester in December, meaning midfielder Liam Tomsett, with three, is the only other player to have made the scoresheet more than twice.

Ex-City striker Jamie Reed is hoping to enhance the team’s firepower, having joined the club last month from Welsh Premier League club Newtown, returning to English football for the first time since 2014 when he left Chester to sign for South Melbourne in Australia.

Reed, now 31, has been used as a second-half substitute during the last two matches.

The Chester-born forward bagged 25 goals in 85 outings for the Minstermen between 2011 and 2013 after arriving in North Yorkshire from Bangor City and featured in both of the 2012 Wembley-double winning victories, entering the fray as a 90th-minute sub during the 2-0 FA Trophy triumph over Newport and then coming on as a 78th-minute replacement during the 2-1 Conference play-off final victory against Luton.

Ashton will visit Bootham Crescent having failed to beat any side in the division’s top-13 positions.