York City v Buxton: Selection dilemma at the back for Minstermen boss Steve Watson

York City captain Sean Newton has been training this week – now manager Steve Watson must decide whether to bring him back and if so where.

On-loan left-back Mitch Hancox made his debut last week but is ineligible for today’s FA Cup first-round tie at home to Buxton. Centre-back Newton is an option after a knee injury.

“He’s our captain, one of the best defenders and one of the best attacking defenders in the division, so the temptation is to put him straight back in but is it the right thing to do, is he ready?” said Watson, who is also without Michael Duckworth, Michael Woods and Scott Barrow.

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“He’s probably played half the games in his career at left-back, so I don’t think he’ll have forgotten how to play there.

BACK IN TEH GAME? York City defender Sean Newton Picture: Bruce Rollinson

“I’m reluctant to put Paddy (McLaughlin) there because he looked so at home and the midfield looked so good on Saturday. We’ve also got the options of young Jonny (Haase) and young Lewis (Cunningham).”

With a four-figure Buxton following set to contribute to the biggest attendance at York’s new stadium, Watson is looking forward to a good game against the Northern Premier League side.

For all York’s FA Cup history, they have not reached the second round for 10 years.

“For loads of reasons you want to do well in the Cup – for the fans, for the club financially, for players to have the chance of a competitive game against league players,” said Watson. “For clubs at our level getting to the third round is like getting to the final for Premier League clubs.

York City manager Steve Watson Picture: Bruce Rollinson

“Buxton look like the best team in their division. We’ve got Clayton (Donaldson) and they’ve got Jamie Ward with a similar pedigree – an international (with 35 Northern Ireland caps), he’s only 35. It’s got all the makings of a really good FA Cup tie.”