sport

Boss points to January moves

York boss Nigel Worthington believes his January transfer signings have helped transform his side into serious promotion contenders.

The Minstermen, promoted back to the Football League after an eight-year absence two seasons ago, appeared to be heading for another relegation fight after taking two points from seven league games in August and September.

Worthington signed midfielder Russell Penn from Cheltenham for an undisclosed fee and defenders Keith Lowe (Cheltenham) and John McCombe (Mansfield) at the turn of the year, while goalkeeper Nick Pope returned on loan from Charlton and winger Will Hayhurst arrived on loan from Preston.

Since the start of February York have been unbeaten, winning 11 of their 16 league games and will look to book their place in the play-off final at Wembley next month after sealing a sixth-placed finish with a third straight win against Newport on Saturday.

Worthington, in his first full season in charge after replacing Gary Mills in March last year, said: "Our performance levels overall this season have not been a million miles away from where we are at now.

"We were getting a lot of draws instead of wins and losing the odd one we should have drawn - that was a fine line.

"We brought a couple of experienced players in at the turn of the year and their knowledge of the division and their great professionalism has certainly been a big factor both on and off the pitch.

"They have added something to make that bit of difference, to get us over that fine line."

York travel to promoted Scunthorpe in their last game on Saturday assured of at least seventh place, while victory could lift them above Burton into fifth.