Low-key approach could help York end League exile

MARTIN FOYLE has revealed York City will travel to Wembley on the day to prevent nerves creeping in ahead of the Blue Square Premier play-off final.

The Minstermen are hoping to end a six-year absence from the Football League when they take on Oxford United on Sunday in front of what will be a record crowd for a non-League promotion decider.

Manager Foyle, who took York to Wembley last year in the FA Trophy, is determined to keep preparations as low-key as possible ahead of a game that kicks off at 5pm.

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And that means making the trip south on the day, despite an attempt to do the same earlier in the season for an FA Cup third round tie at Stoke City back-firing badly when snow led to the team coach arriving just two minutes before the scheduled start time.

Foyle explained: "We will travel down on the day and make sure we get there nice and early so there is no panic. We did all the staying down there in a big hotel thing for the FA Trophy final last season.

"The kick-off being 5pm was a factor in our decision. There is no point in the lads waking up at 8am in the hotel and then hanging around all day. Nerves may start to creep in.

"It is not a money issue, we have made quite a bit from the FA Cup and the play-off semi-finals.

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"We have had quite a few overnight trips this season, but we felt this time it would make sense to go on the day."

York are much-changed since the trip to Wembley 12 months ago with Michael Ingham, Ben Purkiss, Danny Parslow, David McGurk, Levi Mackin and top scorer Richard Brodie likely to be the only survivors from the 2-0 FA Trophy final defeat to Stevenage.

Foyle, who made more than 100 appearances for Oxford in the Eighties, said: "I think it helps that we went to a final at Wembley last year, even if the team has changed quite a bit since then.

"We know what it is all about. Wembley is a place for winners, I learned that as a player with Port Vale (when the club won the Football League Trophy but lost a play-off final within two months in 1993).

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"That experience will be passed on to the players. The players who weren't with us last season will also know what Wembley is about from watching the Cup final on television.

"It is a great place to go and play football and I know our supporters are looking forward to it.

"Oxford expect to have around 32,000 fans there but we will have our fair share as well.

"It should be a good game. I had four good years at Oxford and they are a good club. But we want to win promotion."