By Ryan Brookes | Image by Mark Comer
York City face a return to action in the Vanarama National League this Tuesday, away at Oxford City.
Currently occupying 23rd in the league table, the newcomers have struggled so far in their maiden campaign in the fifth tier, following playoff delight eight months ago.
Despite a slow start to life in new surroundings, the Hoops soon picked up form early in the term, piecing together an impressive seven-game unbeaten run which involved the dismantling of Boreham Wood and Hartlepool United.
But the part-time outfit have since dropped down the table and face the fight against relegation for the remainder of the season.
Like the Minstermen, Oxford have not played a single game in over a fortnight, since tasting defeat away at Hartlepool.
Prior to that, Ross Jenkins’ side had won just two out of their last nine in all competitions, including that 2-0 defeat to York City.
Manager: Ross Jenkins
A former Watford midfielder, the 33-year-old guided Oxford City to promotion from the National League South in his first full campaign in charge of the club, having joined as manager in March 2022.
Jenkins’ made 81 appearances for Watford as a player, before going on to represent the likes of Crawley Town and Norwegian side Viking, and ended his career in Scotland in 2018 with Hamilton Academical.
Now in his first managerial role, the Oxford boss will look to keep up his good record heading into the second half of the season, and attempt to save the Hoops from the drop.
Top Scorer: Josh Parker
The experienced 32-year-old striker is now into his second season with the club, having joined last summer from Football League side Burton Albion.
He signed for the club with a wealth of Football League experience under his belt, having turned out for the likes of Gillingham, Charlton Athletic and Wycombe Wanderers in recent years.
In his first campaign as an Oxford City player, he finished as the club’s top-scorer, netting 20 times in 33 appearances, and he’s carried on that goalscoring form into this season with 9 goals so far.
Also a current Antigua and Barbuda international, Parker has made 35 appearances and scored five times for his country.
Tuesday’s fixture will be just the second-ever meeting between the two sides.
We faced Oxford City for the first time back in late November, and secured a 2-0 home win thanks to strikes from Tyler Cordner and Will Davies.
That victory marked the first game of our current unbeaten league run of seven, which we will look to extend to eight when we travel to Oxfordshire this week.