YORK City defender Josh Law insists there will be no old pals’ act when he comes up against former club Alfreton Town tomorrow.

The 27-year-old signed for the Reds – then managed by his father, Nicky Law – in 2008 after a successful loan spell from Chesterfield, and he went on to make a total of 264 appearances over six years for the club.

A fan favourite at North Street, Nottingham-born Law was given the Players’ Player of the Season award and named in the Conference North team of the season in 2011.

However, he is not letting sentimentality get in the way of his aspirations for current employers City – stressing his affiliation with tomorrow’s opponents will not stop him from going all out for victory as the Minstermen look to make a mark on the top end of National League North.

He said: “We’ve got to go there at the weekend and get three points.

“I think every game we have is a must-win because that’s what we’re aiming for but, if you look at the table now, you can’t really have any more slip-ups if you want to go and win it.

“It’s really tight in the position that we are and we need to get those few wins on the bounce now and extend that gap and start looking even further ahead.”

Of course, his motivation is purely professional – he has no axe to grind with his old club.

Law said: “Obviously, I was there quite a while. I had a really good time down there and good memories of the place.

“My old man was the manager – that was part of the reason I went there at the time, to go and get games. It ended up longer than I thought it was going to be, but I loved every minute there.”

Last week’s win over Curzon Ashton, which lifted City up to sixth in the table, has been hailed as the best performance of manager Martin Gray’s five-match tenure.

After the match, defender Dan Parslow said it looked as though the team were finally starting to buy into Gray’s footballing philosophy after a tricky start to the season, and Law agrees.

“It takes time for a manager to get how he wants to play across, and I think especially the first half on Saturday was kind of what he wants, so that’s a positive,” he said. “We just need to carry that on game by game.”

Once that coherent relationship between Gray and his players becomes fully-formed, Law is optimistic that City will be in a good position to gain ground on the league’s leaders, having fallen 16 points behind current pace-setters Salford City following an inconsistent start to the season.

He said: “It’s a massive gap at the minute – we never imagined it would be (that big) – but it just takes three wins and Salford and (second-placed) Harrogate to lose a couple, and it changes.

“They haven’t had their bad patch yet, but they will and hopefully it will coincide with our good patch.”

Gray’s time in charge of the club has seen the starting line-up and matchday squad change fractionally each week, with players being swapped in and out as he works out his preferred formation.

Unfazed by not having a constant line-up to play alongside, Law said: “It’s part and parcel of football really. That’s how it is, you’ve just got to get used to it.”

One change this week sees veteran goalkeeper Adam Bartlett go straight into the squad after his arrival from manager Gray’s former club, Darlington.

Law said: “I’ve played against him a couple of times, and he’s always done well when we’ve played him.

“He’s done really well at Darlington. I think we’ve got a really good keeper and it’s a good foundation for us.”