YORK City manager Martin Foyle admitted his players were “very deflated” after their promotion dream ended in 3-1 defeat to Oxford United at Wembley.

An own goal by U’s ‘keeper Ryan Clarke saw City trail 2-1 during the interval of yesterday’s Blue Square Premier final at Wembley.

But substitute Alfie Potter added a third goal in stoppage time to join Matt Green and James Constable on the scoresheet and secure a return to the Football League for Oxford.

Foyle later lamented his side’s start to the game after conceding twice in the opening 21 minutes, as well as the failure to convert second-half chances.

The disappointed City chief said: “Defeat’s hard to take and we had a very deflated changing room afterwards. You have to give full credit to Oxford though.

“They started the game that bit better than us and the two early goals gave them a big lift. It gave them breathing space but, when we got a goal back, we knew we would get chances. Unfortunately, we couldn’t take them.”

But Foyle would not let the result detract from his side’s efforts throughout the season, adding: “We know we are a bit behind Oxford in quality, strength and that bit of experience and I have tried to build a side very quickly.

“They have been excellent for me. We were looking to break into the top ten this season, but we have had good cup runs and reached the play-off final.”

Foyle will now set about the task of strengthening his team and admitted that he would be prioritising firepower and speed, saying: “We are miles off the likes of Oxford and Luton financially, but I will be looking to bring one or two players of the right type in.

“We need somebody who can pinch a goal as well as a bit of pace.

“Most of the players are under contract and I’m happy with what I’ve signed up, but we will be looking to recruit more Conference players.

“That’s what you need in this division because League players are a different animal.”

City’s 37-goal leading marksman Richard Brodie is under contract at Bootham Crescent until next summer, but Foyle is in discussions about extending his current deal.

Brodie would, otherwise, be free to leave the club under the Bosman ruling in a year’s time, leaving City with the dilemma of whether or not to cash in on his talents this summer.

Foyle said: “He is under contract and we are talking about another one with him. Brodes is a fantastic lad who was probably a bit overawed here.

“There’s still parts of his game that can be worked on, but he’s scored lots of goals for us this season.”

The City boss is also hoping to see the best of £55,000 striker Michael Gash in 2010/11 after he impressed during a 20-minute outing at Wembley.

Foyle said: “The other two strikers have been brilliant for me and Michael Gash was unfortunate with his foot injury. I hope he comes back in pre-season flying and ready to score goals because I know what I’ve bought there.”

But the City boss admitted the club now need to guard against a play-off hangover as they look to contend with the disappointment of yesterday’s defeat.

He said: “I remember at Port Vale when we lost the play-off final at Wembley and only won one of our first ten games at the start of the next season, but then won ten out of ten to get promoted. People might think it’s easy to get over things like this, but it isn’t.

“It will be hard next season. I know Grimsby and Darlington’s budgets already and Fleetwood will be moneybags as well.”

Foyle added his appreciation for City’s 9,000-strong following under the arch, saying: “Our fans turned out in numbers and I’d like to say a big thank-you for their efforts.”