York City are in 'one of the strongest Conferences ever... it's where we want to be,' says manager Michael Morton
The Racecourse Ground is sold out for today’s Conference match, par for the course this season. Their 9,953 average gate is within 500 of the League One figure, and just below Bournemouth's in the Premier League.
Hollywood owners Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, plus a Netflix crew, have raised the Dragons’ profile massively.
But it is not just them.
In November, 16,511 saw Notts County draw with Yeovil Town and York's 4,692 average only puts them sixth in the division. Eleven Conference North clubs, including Scarborough Athletic, and six in the south average over 1,000.
Wrexham tempting ex-England goalkeeper Ben Foster out of retirement to make his debut today was yet another show of force.
It shows what York are up against to re-establish themselves in the fifth tier after five seasons out.
"It's probably one of the strongest seasons in this division," argues manager Michael Morton. "Two or three are Football League clubs if not League One clubs in terms of the money they're spending and the managers they've got.
"That's where the players want to be. We've got enough players who've been around the Football League to use their experience and the younger players who want to play at a higher level have got to learn and kick on.
"It's a tough league for us but we've got to enjoy it and the way to enjoy it is to stay in it.
"Even in the league below there are some top teams, and you look at some of the clubs fighting relegation and the massive histories they've got.
"I said it a few years ago when I was coming to watch York in Conference North, the National League is almost like League One or Two. We're getting big crowds and looking at how it's competing with League Two, it's good for football."
Buoyed by the win over Dorking which opened up an eight-point gap to the relegation zone, York are set to hand a debut to deadline-day signing Danny Rowe. Alex Whittle is back in training but Ethan Ross is still out after two head injuries.