DAN PYBUS was close to signing for Sky Bet League Two side Leyton Orient before his move to York City.
Central midfielder Pybus made a stellar debut for York in their 2-0 opening day victory over Woking last weekend, the club’s first match in the Vanarama National League in five years.
Having impressed City as a trialist in pre-season, Pybus joined the club permanently just nine days ago, following his release by Dunfermline Athletic, although the 24-year-old had almost signed terms elsewhere weeks before.
“Leyton Orient were going to sign Dan but then he got appendicitis and for some reason they didn’t take him, so luckily Dan hadn’t got a move anywhere else,” manager John Askey explained.
“He had not trained for four weeks before Saturday so he’s done really well to start the season like he has.”
Askey was speaking at Monday night’s fans forum in which supporters could put questions to the manager for the first time since his appointment, initially as interim manager, in November.
Since his move into the City hot seat, Askey has led the Minstermen to promotion through the National League North play-offs and, after a summer rebuild, life in the fifth tier began with an impressive win over Woking.
Over the off-season, the 2017/18 National League winner has been busy signing players, with a total of 16 joining the club.
On his recruitment process, Askey explained: “It comes from years of being in the game. Football is a small community and there’s only so many players out there. Over the years, you build contacts.
“You put into place a system and you build a squad that’s going to fit into that. It’s pretty simple really.
“The main thing is getting players with good attitudes. If you bring in a player that doesn’t train well and training dips, it has an impact on the team.
“If you train properly, that improves you. That’s all part of bringing players in.”
One of the 16 players to join is goalkeeper Ethan Ross, who is on a season-long loan deal from Stockport County.
Ross started over Ryan Whitley against Woking and is the current number one, although Askey denied rumours linking his second-choice keeper with a return to Scarborough Athletic.
“Not from our point of view,” he said of the truth of the Whitley speculation. “I want two good goalkeepers. At the start of the season I said to both of them ‘The position is up for grabs.’
“I felt Ethan had done slightly better than Ryan in pre-season but as the season goes on, if Ethan is not performing, we know we’ve got a good keeper to come in.
“I’m also aware that Ryan does need game time and it might get to a stage where we have to look at trying to put him out (on loan). But to do that, we’d need someone of equal quality coming in.
“I think that’s important for Ryan’s development as well. He’s at that age where we want to keep pushing on.”
On the details of Ross’ loan deal, Askey continued: “Stockport have got a recall clause in December but they assured me that unless there was a crisis where they needed him, then we’d be able to retain him until the end of the season. Hopefully they are true to their word.”