PETER JACKSON today fired-up his Town squad and supporters for the derby against Bradford and told them: "Treat it like the play-off final!"
Jackson's squad have taken part in martial arts sessions to prepare for Saturday's noon kick-off at the Galpharm Stadium, when a 15,000-plus crowd will pump up the volume.
It's a hugely significant match in terms of Coca-Cola League I and, in the first meeting between the clubs since 1999, Jackson is keen to maintain his unbeaten record against City as Town manager.
"This will be our most intense challenge since the play-off final and we need all the players and supporters up for it," said Jackson, who still has midfield man Chris Brandon receiving treatment.
"There is going to be a fantastic atmosphere because Bradford have just about sold out the South Stand and our supporters are going to have to shout and sing from the first minute to the last to drown them out and back the lads.
"Having waited a long time for this derby- it was the first fixture everyone was looking for when the list came out - our fans have a big role to play, and the players know we have to be ready for a tough battle from the very outset."
City manager Colin Todd is expected to include loan striker Zema Abbey, who was sent-off after scoring in his first appearance for the club and who has just served a three-match ban.
He could well partner talisman striker Dean Windass as Bradford, who have won all four of their Yorkshire derbies so far, look for only a second win in seven games.
"It's not about what Bradford do, it's about executing our gameplan on the day," added Jackson.
"We've had one great result and one bad one in the last two matches, but the performances have been good. We must build on that."