FORMER Darlington defender Joey Hutchinson could be handed his full York City debut today after signed non-contract terms for the KitKat Crescent club.

Hutchinson, 25, has put pen to paper for the Minstermen in time to be included in the squad to entertain Cambridge United in the opening fixture of the Blue Square Premier season.

City boss Billy McEwan looks poised to start Hutchinson alongside his former Darlington team-mate David McGurk at the heart of his defence against the U's.

Ex-Birmingham City trainee Hutchinson is set to be given his chance as former Cardiff centre-back Danny Parslow is still on the road to recovery following an ankle injury and new signing Carl Jones lacks senior experience.

Hutchinson made his senior debut for Birmingham at the age of 19 and went on to make seven appearances for the St Andrews club, including a Premier League start at Leeds United in January 2003. But he fell behind international trio Matthew Upson (England), Kenny Cunningham (Republic of Ireland) and Aliou Cisse (Senegal) in the pecking order for centre-back places and left for Darlington four years ago.

The Middlesbrough-born defender went on to start 84 games for the League Two side before being released by Dave Penney in February. Hutchinson's last senior game for Darlington - and his 13th start of the season - came at Hartlepool in October but he failed to regain his place under new manager Penney following injury problems.

McEwan has kept the identity of his starting XI for today's game close to his chest and, about the defensive situation, said: "We have a number of permutations in there that we are considering."

City: (probable) Evans, Purkiss, McGurk, Jones, Robinson, Farrell, Elliott, Panther, Woolford, Beardsley, Sodje. Subs from: Pentney, Craddock, Greenwood, Meechan, Brodie, Brayson.

Cambridge: (probable) Potter, Morrison, Albrighton, Hoyte, Gleeson, Convery, Brown, Quinton, Pitt, Fortune-West, Boylan. Subs: Smith, Woolleaston, Reed, Rendell, Peters.

l Making a Mark: Page 54