HULL FC boss Lee Radford reckons York City Knights' switch to Bootham Crescent and then a move to a brand new stadium could prove a big boon to all levels of rugby league in the city.

One-time England international Radford, who played more than 330 times in the top tier for Hull and Bradford Bulls, brings his Black and Whites to North Yorkshire tomorrow for the Knights' opening friendly at their new city centre base - assuming the match beats the weather.

And, having been aware of the community stadium saga in the Minster city as well as the Knights' off-field strife last year, he is hoping it will eventually prove fruitful in the long run.

"In my opinion something like the Keepmoat Stadium at Doncaster would be fantastic for that city," he said.

"But I appreciate it's a case of what and whether they can get through the red tape.

"I coached East Hull for seven years against the likes of Heworth, (York) Acorn and (New Earswick) All Blacks, and down the years they were always difficult places to go to, particularly when they were in the National Conference League.

"Both my lads are playing at youth level and over the years they've played York sides.

"For the rugby league fans in that city and for the amateur game there, it would be good to see a club like the Knights playing in better facilities.

"I wish that across the game of rugby league. If they can get past the politics and heckling off the field it would be a benefit to the club and the game as a whole."

Referring to Super League and Papua New Guinea legend Stanley Gene, as well as Hull's own KC Stadium, Radford added: "I know Stanley has recently taken up a role at York and is trying to promote the game. It helps when you can bring people to surroundings like what we have at Hull FC."

Meanwhile, Radford was leaving it late to name his squad for tomorrow's pre-season fixture after a flu virus went through the training camp, but has confirmed he planned to field a strong squad.

The likes of Super League regulars Kirk Yeaman, Danny Washbrook, who has joined from Wakefield, Richard Whiting, Lee Smith and Feka Paleaaesina had been pencilled in to play, and, if other first-team contenders are laid low, Radford was set to call up "one or two" of his big-name new signings from the NRL too.

The quartet of Frank Pritchard, Sika Manu, Carlos Tuimavave and Tongan winger Mahe Fonua - who has replaced York product Tom Lineham after his switch to Warrington - had previously not been expected to play.

Radford, whose side will also meet Doncaster on January 17 and Hull KR on January 24 in friendlies, says tomorrow's fixture has come a bit too early for his liking - a month before the Super League season starts.

But he was happy to fulfil the Airlie Birds' agreement with the Knights.

He explained: "We ended up playing 38 games last year including the friendlies. Hopefully we'll go further in the Challenge Cup this time and be in the play-offs as well.

"It's a lot of footy and ideally I wanted to keep our friendlies down to two, but the club had a deal with York that we'd play them.

"In a perfect world we would've played it closer to the season than we are but I believe it's the only time the football stadium there is available, so we'll go and hopefully it will be a good run-out for us and a good game for the supporters."