YORK City legend John Byrne does not want to relieve himself of an ignominious entry in the Bootham Crescent history books.

Perhaps surprisingly, considering the esteem he is held in by the Minstermen faithful and his later achievements in a red shirt, Byrne is one of an impressive group of players who share the current club record for most consecutive home games without a win.

It stands at 14 - one more than the club have presently racked up - with fellow past City favourites such as Keith Walwyn, Gary Ford, Derek Hood, Malcolm Crosby, Brian Pollard, Steve Senior and Mike Astbury, all of whom would later be integral members of a squad that became the first in English football to accumulate 100 points in a season, playing significant roles during the sorry sequence of 1981/82.

Despite deciding to stop including City on his weekend fixed-odds slip, with Byrne's old club the only remaining pro team not to win a match on their own soil this season, the Manchester-born, 53-year-old will be willing City to defeat Accrington on Boxing Day to avoid emulating the run of 33 years ago.

He said: "I still follow York and their result is probably the first one I look for every week. They've let me down a bit on my coupon this season and I've started going for draws rather than wins, but the club showed last season how quickly things can change and I hope they can beat Accrington.

"Records are there to be broken and it's not great having that one on my CV, but I'd rather they didn't equal it and won instead on Boxing Day."

Byrne reasoned that psychology can play just as important a role as any lack of ability during such long stretches without a victory - an argument supported by the players at successive managers Barry Lyons and Kevin Randall's disposal back in the early 1980s.

Such an assertion is also given more credence by the fact that City went on to win eight of their next ten home fixtures after bringing an end to the club's stickiest-ever Bootham Crescent spell.

Furthermore, Byrne believes that it was no coincidence the upturn in fortunes occurred following Denis Smith's arrival at the club as a defender.

The competitive Smith was subsequently appointed manager the following campaign and created a new atmosphere at the club that would lead to the historic old fourth division title-winning season.

"We had good players back in 1981 and the nucleus of that Championship-winning side was already there but it just never clicked at that time," Byrne explained. "We didn't have the team spirit and camaraderie that came later when the likes of Denis Smith and Viv Busby arrived.

"We used to go out a for a few beers to build that back in our day but that's frowned upon now. You do need that winning mentality they brought though.

"That hadn't been there for a long time and they gave us belief. They certainly turned my career around.

"There's definitely a massively psychological aspect to the game. If you are on a winning run, you get into that winning mentality.

"You go out on to the pitch knowing you won't be beaten and the opposite is true when you're on a losing streak. I remember in the Championship side I thought I was going to score in every game but that wasn't the case during that run in 1981/82.

"As a young 20-year-old player, I had the pressures of just wanting to do well, rather than being afraid because of the run we were on, but I remember never really seeing eye to eye with Kevin Randall at the time too and that didn't help."

Byrne struggled to make an impact during his early outings for City before later emerging as a darling of the Bootham Crescent crowd.

While recognising that supportive fans can help the team achieve results - and City's followers have stayed patient during this term's struggles - Bryne insisted, however, that it's the players' responsibility to provide encouragement from the pitch.

"The crowd will only react to what's happening on the park," he pointed out. "Everyone says the crowd needs to get behind the team but they need to see the team having a go, even if that's just someone making a fully-committed, sliding tackle. You need a spark to ignite them."

Byrne, who netted 63 times for City before going on to a stellar career that included an FA Cup final appearance with Sunderland and selection for the Republic of Ireland's 1990 World Cup squad, is now working as a podiatrist for the NHS in Worthing, dealing with medical and surgical treatment of foot disorders.

He recently gave up co-commentary radio work, meanwhile, covering Brighton matches after 12 years to spend more time with his young son, who he intends to bring to Bootham Crescent before the ground is due to be bulldozed in 2016.

"The last time I was there was for the charity match in Keith (Walwyn)'s memory more than ten years ago," Byrne recalled. "I kicked it off with Keith's son Matt which was a great honour.

"I want to take my five-year-old son to the stadium now before it is knocked down because it played such a big part in my life and it would be great to go back and show him the dressing rooms and everything else."