MANAGER Steve Watson says he does not care what a team's form is before a visit to York City - they will all come to make it tough.

Coming in off the back of three wins, three draws and three defeats, the erratic Southport are the visitors to Bootham Crescent on Saturday in the National League North.

After a promising start that saw two draws and two victories, the Port's midweek home win over Altrincham was their first in five outings - a run containing three defeats.

City, meanwhile, have maintained an excellent start to the campaign. The only team to remain unbeaten in the division, the Minstermen were only knocked off top spot following Tuesday's dramatic 0-0 draw at Guiseley - and some might feel Southport present a good opportunity for second-placed York to get back to winning ways.

It is not so cut-and-dried for Watson, however.

He said: "Honestly, I don't really care what run of form teams are when they're coming to us.

"I think they come to us - one of the teams flying high in the league, one of the biggest clubs in the league, we've got a massive fanbase - and I think everybody comes and really wants to have a go when they play York.

"I don't really care what form they're coming in with, I know it's going to be a tough game."

And Watson has good reason to suspect so. As evidenced this season, it is hard to know what to expect from visiting teams.

Farsley Celtic and Brackley Town seemed content to try and leave with a point. But Leamington had some fight about them, as had Gateshead, who have arguably posed the greatest challenge yet to hosts York.

Watson said: "We know that - like Brackley, like Farsley, like Gateshead - coming to York is a big deal, especially when we're doing as well as we are at the moment.

"You can never tell how teams are going to play at York because some have surprised me.

"Brackley, who are a footballing side who finished way ahead of us last season, came in and set up for a point, so you can't really tell what's going to happen.

"I'm more concentrated on us.

"There are times I've spoken to the players after a draw and I've demanded more but I really thought we played well the other night and on another day we would have beaten one of the best sides in the league away from home.

"There wasn't a lot wrong the other night, but we're certainly not ones to rest on our laurels either.

"We've worked on two or three things which could have been better but, ultimately, I think we're in a good place."

On the Guiseley game, Watson added: "It was two of the better, on-form teams giving it everything.

"It was a competitive game. Their style makes it competitive and if you can't match them, they will win.

"I thought we matched them and, in some areas, bettered them.

"I think we had the better chances. I thought their chances were all created through balls into the box. I thought we got down the sides and created chances - we just missed that killer touch at the end.

"But as I said the other night, as long as you don't lose - and we certainly deserved to come away with at least a point, probably three - and you move on from there."

Centre-back Steve McNulty missed out on Tuesday night and, "chances are", he will be absent tomorrow with the hope he will be fit again for King's Lynn Town in three weeks' time. But thus far, his replacements - 19-year-olds Josh King and Harry Spratt - have given Watson reason for optimism. The former played in the win at Gloucester City, while Spratt made his full debut on Tuesday.

A couple of other players were rested from training to avoid aggravating fatigue. Watson said there might be one player who could miss out tomorrow, though he was reluctant to identify him.

"I trust everybody that I've got," Watson added. "We've got four points with two young lads making their debuts and we didn't look any worse for it.

"That gives me hope."