YORK City boss Steve Watson bemoaned a “wasteful” performance as his side surrendered a 2-0 lead to share the spoils at home to Boston United.

The Minstermen were in the ascendancy having scored two first-half goals from free kicks, courtesy of Sean Newton’s spectacular strike and Macaulay Langstaff following up after a Jon Parkin effort had been saved.

But, as City squandered several second-half openings, the visitors levelled through Jay Rollins and Max Wright, which left a frustrated Watson lamenting his side’s shot-shy streak.

“It felt like a defeat,” he admitted. “We said at half-time that the game’s third goal would be vital, and we actually started the second half better than we did the first.

“We got in some good areas that we could have exploited better, but we were so wasteful and poor in front of goal. I don’t think we really tested their keeper in open play and that’s been the case for the last three games.

“I’ve known a lot of them for a long time and know they are technically better than that, which is very disappointing. Newts’ strike was fantastic, while Macca did well following up for his goal, but it is another game where we haven’t scored in open play.

“I counted six really, good chances to score or pick the right pass in the second half and nothing came from them, while Boston probably had three opportunities and they’ve taken two, which is a damning statistic, although I don’t think we reacted quickly enough to danger for their first goal. The more the second half went on, the more frustrating it got.

“We know exactly what’s wrong and we’ve worked relentlessly for two weeks on breakaway situations and making the right decisions but, for some reason, that’s not being translated into games. With our position in the league now, we should be able to play with a bit of freedom and positivity but, whilst I can give them as much confidence as I can because I won’t come out and berate them, they have to show their ability in training on a match day.

“I know they can do it, but football is littered with people who can put the ball in the back of the net during training.”

Having seen his team struggle for attacking potency during goal-less, back-to-back displays against Scarborough and Altrincham, Watson decided to dispense with the previous 4-3-3 system and fielded Parkin and Jordan Burrow as a two-man strikeforce.

On that decision, the ex-Everton defender reasoned: “I wanted to change things because we haven’t been scoring and we almost played 4-2-4, because we’ve got to win games. We also made positive substitutions.

“We put Wes (York) on and Alex Kempster for Adriano Moke, but nothing really came of that, so we threw everything at it, but we were not good enough with the ball.”

Veteran striker Parkin did receive praise, however, for his 63-minute contribution after being handed his first start since September 1.

“I thought he did a lot of good things,” Watson said of Parkin’s surprise outing. “He took the free kick for the second goal and, when you get the ball into his feet, he’s a good footballer.

“He can play balls around the corner and put people in. He won a lot of headers as well against a formidable opponent in Cressy (Ryan Cresswell) but, as the game went on, his lack of match fitness was always going to come into play, and you run the risk of him running out of steam after an hour.

“He’s arguably the best scorer in the club, so he deserves a chance when we’re not scoring goals and I’d have liked to see an opportunity drop to Jon, because he didn’t get one, but he reminded me and everybody else that he’s still got a part to play in this season.”

In-form defender Newton also received plaudits, as he continues to rebuild his reputation at Bootham Crescent.

“He’s getting back to the player I remember from seeing him in the past and the one the fans here probably remember,” Watson declared. “He’s was head and shoulders above everybody else and he is playing with confidence now, which was summed up by his goal, because you probably wouldn’t try that shot otherwise, but he hit it with pace, power and accuracy.

“He has stepped up and the other lads have now got to hang on to his coat-tails.”

Langstaff was also handed his first City start in 11 weeks after returning from a one-month loan spell at Bradford Park Avenue and, whilst he got on the scoresheet, Watson argued that he wants his ex-Gateshead forward, who has now netted six times in 29 outings for the club, to be more of a goal threat.

“Alex Kempster has shown great form, but I thought he’d been a bit quiet for a couple of weeks, so we gave Macca a chance, because we’d thought he’d get chances coming in off the line, which he did,” the City chief explained. “He got in a lot of good positions, but I would like to see him pull the trigger and back himself a bit more.

"You have to be single-minded as a striker, but he was looking to offload at times instead of getting a shot away when he saw the whites of the keeper’s eyes.”