YORK CITY manager Gary Mills pulled no punches after seeing his side crushed by lowly part-timers Southport, who inflicted only the third league defeat in 12 matches since he joined the club last October.
It was a disastrous day for York. They were down to 10 men with the game 71 seconds old when central-defensive lynchpin David McGurk was sent off and they were 2-0 behind after only four minutes.
McGurk has been York's most consistent player in the five-and-a-half years he has been with them and his absence for 89 minutes, plus a rare poor display by centre-back partner Chris Smith, produced yawning gaps which they never looked like filling.
Mills, who hinted there might be comings and goings before tonight's transfer deadline, made no excuses after the game. "Our defending was disgraceful for three of the goals. I nave no complaints about the sending off, or the penalty, but if we defend like that we will win nothing. I have been delighted with the squad since I became manager, but not today."
McGurk was red-carded after his clumsy challenge on Shaun Whalley, Chris Lever scoring from the spot. Weak defending saw unmarked Whalley make it 2-0.
Greg Young's unnecessary challenge on John-Paul Kissock, who was heading for the corner flag, produced the free-kick from which Kevin Lee headed the third.
A mix-up between Smith, who could have cleared, and Michael Ingham, who could have come out, ended with Ingham spilling Alan Moogan's shot for Whalley to score the fourth.
Peter Till's strong runs were a feature of an overall poor display by York, who have conceded nine in their last two away games.
Southport: McMillan; Lee, Ryan (Williams, 38), Marsh-Evans, Lever; Whalley (Gray, 72). Moogan (Powell, 56), Blakeman, Ledsham, Kissock, McNeil. Unused substitutes: Barratt, Dickinson.
York City: Ingham; Parslow, Smith, McGurk, Carruthers; Boucaud (Hatfield, 46), Mackin, Meredith (Young, 6); Chambers, Rankine (Reed, 55), Till. Unused substitutes: McDermott, Constantine.
Referee: S Duncan (Newcastle).
Man of the match: Peter Till.
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