Grecians boss previews visit of Minstermen to the ParkExeter City manager Paul Tisdale is expecting another tough test when York City visit St James Park on Saturday.
Former Northern Ireland manager Nigel Worthington, who took the reins at Bootham Crescent 18 months ago, has added quality to the Minstermen’s squad during the summer as they look to recreate or improve upon their play-off finish last season.
City came from behind to win this fixture last season at a similar stage of the campaign, though York were victors in the reverse meeting as they finished their league campaign with a flourish.
The bookies have York as possibles for another play-off push, which comes as little surprise to the Exeter boss.
“They have continuity, and they have refreshed in the summer by making some signings to attempt to improve the team,” said Paul. “They had a very good finish to last season – their last third or quarter of the season was exceptional – they were the form side.
“They have the same manager, the same staff, the same key players and they have added one or two. They’ll be looking for an improvement on last year, and any side that has continuity and is constantly refreshing and improving the side with some changes will be successful.”
Both sides will be aiming for a first win of the season. York have drawn all three of their opening games, while City drew their opener against Portsmouth before defeats at Plymouth and Burton.
So Paul feels that the players are still working for each other and is confident that the team can produce the kind of performance that their individual and collective quality allows.
“The players have been very committed and there’s a really good togetherness about the group, there’s no doubt about it,” Tis said.
“We’re enjoying our work – there are always positives to be had when you try and develop a group of players because the job is to spin the positives and work with them, and that’s what we’ll do.
“Even when things are tough, sometimes they are the best days because they make the job simpler and more clear. When you have clarity, you’ve always got somewhere to move with the team.
“Results haven’t been great but I don’t think we’re that far away from putting a performance together.”