JAMES FORD insists that his concentration will be on his York City Knights side rather than any potential retribution from the club’s former players.

York return to Betfred Championship action this weekend when they travel to Halifax Panthers on Sunday morning (11.30am).

The game sees the Knights come up against former half-back Liam Harris, who had two previous loan spells at the club, the latter of which saw Harris feature in the side which secured a third-placed finish in the Championship in 2019.

Harris joined Halifax over the off-season, with Connor Robinson also switching from York to the Panthers, although he will not feature due to a broken foot.

And Ford is fully aware of the threat posed by the former Hull Kingston Rovers and Hull FC star.

“Liam is a player that I’ve had at York and I’ve coached him a fair bit here,” said Ford. “I think a lot of him and he’s got some real strengths to his game, but so have we.

“We’ll be focusing on ourselves rather than on what Liam can do.”

York have had a mixed start to the league season, with four wins and four defeats. They have yet to beat a side ahead of them in table and will be hoping to end that fact against sixth-placed Halifax.

Ford said: “I’ve said to the players that we’re close to being a good side. Our ball movement has improved and our off-the-ball efforts have improved. There’s a couple of areas that we need to tidy up on and we’re working hard at it.

“I’d like us to be tidier at play-fives and transitions into defence.

“Halifax have got some big, strong players who carry the ball really aggressively. We need to make sure that we get our detail right around them and, if we do and we maintain the other things, I’ll be pleased.”

As expected, Brendan O’Hagan and Ben Jones-Bishop have been named in the York 21-man squad, replacing the departed Mikey Lewis and injured Danny Kirmond.

York City Knights squad: Marsh, Bass, Salter, Atkins, K Dixon, O’Hagan, Jubb, Teanby, Clarkson, Scott, Cuthbertson, Brining, Baldwinson, Stock, Green, Spears, Porter, Whiteley, Jones-Bishop, Washbrook, Dean.