YORK City manager Martin Foyle has reminded “doom and gloom” merchants that the club are still in control of their own destiny in this season’s play-off race.

A run of four successive defeats has seen Foyle’s side surrender a significant advantage in the battle for top-five places and drop to sixth, much to the consternation of the Bootham Crescent faithful.

But, with his team still one point behind fifth-placed Kettering and boasting a game in hand, the City chief is instructing his players to remain positive ahead of tomorrow’s trip to mid-table Altrincham.

Kettering, who lost to Cambridge on Tuesday night, travel to title-chasing Oxford this weekend.

The Minstermen, meanwhile, tackle Alty before two games in five days against Mansfield and Wimbledon, currently occupying the two positions below them in the Blue Square Premier table.

About the challenging week ahead, Foyle said: “There’s a lot of doom and gloom at the moment but the play-offs are still very much within our grasp. We have got to keep fighting and the players know that.

“There have been some individual mistakes but we’ve got to get on with it because we are all in it together. We’re expecting a difficult game at Altrincham – there are no easy ones in the Conference and people need to understand that – but we will be able to get the ball down and play on their pitch.

“We are looking forward to that and then we’ve got two crackers against Mansfield and AFC Wimbledon and I would prefer to play those teams up there with us at the moment.”

David McGurk is fit again following the knee injury that saw him miss Tuesday night’s 2-1 home defeat against Salisbury and is expected to return to the starting line-up.

Skipper Daniel Parslow and midfielder Levi Mackin have also shrugged off knocks that saw them only make the bench in that match, but Alex Lawless (hamstring) and Chris Carruthers (ankle) are still sidelined.

Foyle has also attempted to bolster his squad with moves in the loan market this week, saying: “I’ve tried to bring a couple of players in but we haven’t been able to get them here.

“There is still scope in the budget to do that though as we have worked around it well. It would be good to freshen things up because we need better at the moment.”

Having started with a 4-3-3 formation before losing Carruthers against Salisbury, Foyle also stressed that he would not rule out adopting similar tactics between now and the end of the season.

He said: “It’s the only formation we seem to come up against at the moment. You look at the top five and they are all playing it.

“None of them are playing expansive football and I don’t think you can during the final third of the season in this league, when teams are getting nervy and we’re seeing a string of funny results.”

• City’s travel partners York Pullman are offering a special rate for tomorrow’s game at Moss Rose.

For just £7.50, City fans will receive return travel, departing from Bootham Crescent at 11.30am.

To book a place, phone 01904 624447, extension 4.

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