BOSTON United manager Lee Canoville has warned county rivals Gainsborough Trinity that his side are fired up for tonight’s clash.
The Pilgrims travel to the Northolme to take on the Blues in the Lincs Senior Shield (KO 7.45pm).
Tensions have arisen between United and Trinity after Brian Little’s big-spending side snapped up Boston playmaker Jamie Yates and midfielder Shane Clarke in the summer.
The Pilgrims offered both players contracts, but couldn’t compete with the cash being offered by Gainsborough.
Trinity also have ex-Pilgrim Dominic Roma on their books.
“We take the shield very seriously,” said Canoville, who lifted the giant trophy as United captain in 2010.
“You could see by the changes we made on Saturday (the 4-1 friendly defeat against Mansfield Town) that we wanted to keep everyone fresh.
“This game is our top priority in pre-season.
“Gainsborough have spent some money this summer and we want to show them we can still compete with the squad we’ve got.”
Canoville spent part of 2009 on loan at the Northolme, but dismisses his return as anything other than business - suggesting York Street is the place he regards as home.
“Going back doesn’t mean anything to me,” Canoville said.
“I wasn’t there that long and it’s not really a club I feel I have ties to.
“I’m just taking this side into a game we want to win.
“There’s going to be a rivalry between us as they’ve got a few of our ex-players, but our main aim is the result.”
Meanwhile, Pilgrims captain Gareth Jelleyman suggests tonight’s fixture will earn the victors the mental edge ahead of the Blue Square Bet North season.
He told The Standard: “It’s important for bragging rights.
“Gainsborough have spent heavily and are fancied in footballing circles this season.
“It’s a good chance to show them what level we’re at.”