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York City’s Chris Doig relishing a clash with former team-mate Michael Rankine
YORK City centre-back Chris Doig is expecting a “good battle” against former team-mate Michael Rankine if the pair lock horns this weekend at Aldershot.
Doig shared a dressing room with ex-City striker Rankine during a three-month spell with the Shots last season before moving to Bootham Crescent in February.
The Minstermen’s Scottish sentinel has admitted his 6ft 2in 14-stone old pal can be a “real handful” but would relish the challenge of stopping him at the Recreation Ground on Saturday.
City’s trip to Hampshire has coincided with Doig’s recall to the side following a spell on the sidelines due to a hamstring injury.
Rankine, who played with the Minstermen for two seasons before moving on in the summer of 2011, will also be hoping to start against his one-time employers having been hailed from the bench at half-time during Saturday’s 1-0 defeat against Accrington Stanley.
On the prospect of a confrontation with the 27-year-old target man, Doig said: “Ranks is a big boy who I get on really well with.
“He’s a really nice lad. He had a lot of nice things to say about York before I came here and, on his day, he’s a real handful.
“He got a bad injury last season but, if he’s on it and at it, he’s near on unstoppable with his physique, presence and aerial ability but it’s all about the day. I will give it my all if selected and, if he’s playing, we will have a good battle and see who comes out on top.”
Doig played one-and-a-half games for Shots boss Dean Holdsworth either side of New Year’s Day 2012 with the team not conceding a goal during his time on the pitch.
When his short-term deal expired, the former Scotland under-21 international defender was left free to sign for City but Doig insists he has no point to make to Holdsworth or Aldershot, adding: “I had three months there but was only really available to play for one month because of the international clearance being a nightmare to sort out.
“I enjoyed it there though. The gaffer was good to me and they were a good bunch of lads.
“That move got me back into English football after I left Singapore and, even though they were going through a tough spell when I went there, they managed to turn it around and had a very good end to the season. They’ve had a bit of a sticky start to this season but they are a good attacking team.
“It’s also a difficult place to go with a big pitch and a bit of a slope on it. The crowd get behind them and it will be a really difficult game.
“The manager will have them well organised but I’m looking forward to going back and seeing a few familiar faces. I have nothing to prove going back there.
“I don’t go out to prove anything to anybody other than myself. If I don’t perform, I don’t need anybody to tell me.
“I put pressure on myself so this game will be no different – I will want three points and I will want to play well. I will just know a few more boys who we are playing against than normal.”