Rivals prepare for Boxing Day derby

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BRIDLINGTON Town and Scarborough Athletic go head-to-head at Queensgate on Boxing Day, with both sides looking to halt a poor run of form.

The rivals sit third and fourth in the Northern Counties East League table, but both clubs are aware that they cannot afford many more slip-ups if they want to remain in the race for the title.

Town lost 3-1 at Winterton Rangers on Saturday, while their tenants snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, losing a 3-1 lead to lose 4-3 to Barton Town Old Boys.

Seasiders manager Mitch Cook said: “We have lost two out of three and Scarborough have only taken one point out of nine.

“But there will be a big crowd, an obvious rivalry between the clubs and it is the type of game that, if I was a player, I couldn’t wait to be involved in.

“It has got everything going for it and hopefully we will win.

“There are lots of connections between the clubs, lots of the players have played for both teams and some of the supporters go and watch both teams.

“They will know what we are about and vice versa but the form book goes out of the window for this one.

“I was good friends with (ex Boro manager) Paul Olsson and (current assistant) Darren France, and I have spoken to Rudy Funk half a dozen times this season.

“The manager of Scarborough will always be under pressure because they are the biggest club in this league and their expectations are higher.”

Cook has admitted he could make a move to sign one or two new players before the derby clash, while Athletic are reeling from the news star striker Ryan Blott will be playing his final game before a 112-day ban kicks in on January 1.

The match kicks off at 1pm, with turnstiles at Queensgate open from 11.30am.