FRINGE York City first-teamers were told today to buck up or else after an opening match humiliation.

City reserves opened their campaign with a crushing 8-0 defeat at Scunthorpe United, a reverse which assistant manager Eric Winstanley labelled an “embarrassment”.

Ironically, the 8-0 hiding was started by a headed goal from former City favourite Martyn Woolford, who moved from KitKat Crescent to The Iron on the eve of the new season for a fee reported on television to be in the region of £200,000.

Declared Winstanley: “We’ve had a right good talk about this and the players have been told that the performance was just not good enough. The standard was not good enough. The attitude was not right.

“The biggest disappointment is that there are one or two players who think they should be in the first team and are disappointed in playing in the reserves, but if they don’t have the right attitude they will get a good kick up the backside which they have had here.

“It was an embarrassment to lose 8-0 to them. We never really went about it right and that should not, and must not, happen again, otherwise it shows that the back-up for the first team is just not there.”

The assistant manager said in the opening half City had created as many chances as their hosts and had even spurned the chance to halve a 2-0 deficit when Onome Sodje missed a penalty.

As he reflected on further “diabolical” defending on which Woolford capitalised to bag a late second goal to add to a Jonathan Forte hat-trick and strikes from Jake Picton, Peter Winn and Andrew Wright, Winstanley added: “The goals we conceded were too easy. We were very amateurish around the box in terms of trying to stop goals and we just did not help ourselves.

“The experienced players did not help the youngsters and it’s the type of defeat that you cannot afford to happen again.”

Among the City players in action at Glanford Park was winger Bryan Stewart, who is being looked at by the club again after he left City two years ago to concentrate on a career outside the game.

Added Winstanley: “To be fair to him, his fitness is probably not as good as it should be.”

Meanwhile, Crewe have signed former City striker Clayton Donaldson from Hibernian for an undisclosed fee.

Donaldson, 24, has signed a three-year deal at Gresty Road.