MICHAEL Rankine is looking forward to joining forces with fellow man-mountain Jon Parkin – the only player who has ever been able to get the better of him at set-pieces!

The experienced pair could both lead a powerful York City attack next season, having agreed one-year deals at Bootham Crescent.

On that prospect, 6ft 2in, 14-stone heavyweight Rankine said: “I’ve marked Jon a couple of times and, if I’m being honest, he’s the only player who can move me on corners. I remember trying to grip him when I was playing for Aldershot and he was at Fleetwood and he moved me like a little boy.

“That was just the once, though, I’d like to make clear! His record in the game speaks for itself though.

“He’s strong, great in the air and has a good touch. He’ll also take a bit of pressure off me, as I’m normally the forward who has two players clinging off him.

“I’ve played with another big man before – (Richard) Brodie was probably taller than me but quicker – and I think we can cause problems. We’re both big and strong and defenders don’t like playing against that.

“If we can get people playing around us, we will be an issue for other teams.”

Rankine was a member of the Guiseley side that condemned City to National League North relegation with a late final-day equaliser against Solihull.

The 32-year-old forward, who was substituted 55 minutes into that game, confessed the match proved a bitter-sweet experience, reasoning: “It was a bit of a tough situation. I didn’t want a relegation on my CV, but I didn’t want to send York down either, even though coming back here wasn’t in the offing at all at the time.

“It felt bitter-sweet but, as a semi-professional or a professional, you have to do what’s right for the club you play for. Hopefully, I can now get York back in the National League and higher again, although it’s a tough league and never easy when you’re only going for one automatic promotion spot.”

Rankine will be returning to the full-time game, having combined playing last season with a foray into the property industry, which will now be put on the “back-burner”.

“I want to prove to myself and others that I’ve still got it and can be a handful,” he explained. “I don’t set myself goal targets, because it depends on the style of play we will be using but, hopefully, I can chip away regardless.”