YORK CITY equalled a club record of 35 games without an away victory as James Norwood’s ‘93rd-minute’ header earned title-contenders Tranmere a 1-0 triumph.
The Minstermen came agonisingly close to keeping their first clean sheet on the road during that 15-month win-less run but, with the break for FA Trophy action, face a fortnight propping up the table after former striker Reece Thompson secured a 1-0 win for North Ferriby at Gateshead.
York face Ferriby during a Boxing Day and New Year’s Day double-header in fixtures that could go a long way to determining both teams’ fates.
Despite the wait for a first win following his return to York as manager being extended to a 10th game, though, Gary Mills was concentrating on the positives from a Prenton Park performance that saw on-loan midweek signings Jon Parkin and Rhys Murphy both impress in attack, prior to the latter’s withdrawal early in the second half due to suspected ribcage damage.
Mills said: “Even though this defeat hurts, we’ve got to take a lot from the game because it was a step forward and we’ve got to reproduce that in two weeks’ time during our next league match against Torquay.”
Norwood settled matters when he planted home a downward header from seven yards from Lee Vaughan’s right-wing cross.
Tranmere Rovers: Davies; Vaughan, Sutton, McNulty, Ihiekwe; Harris (Dawson, 90), Hughes, Tollitt, Maynard (Kirby, 33) Norwood, Mangan (Cook, 65). Unused substitutes: Turner, Wallace.
York City: Letheren; Rooney, Klukowski, Fry; Heslop, Holmes, Moke, Newton, Whittle; Parkin, Murphy (McDaid, 58). Unused substitutes: Connolly, Dixon, Woodland, Rzonca.
Referee: W Barratt.