YORK City Knights boss James Ford insists his team will not ease off as they go in search of a fifth straight victory in the Betfred Championship.

The League One champions, sitting pretty in third after five rounds of the season, go to a Rochdale side who are third-bottom with only one win so far - and who have not beaten York since 2010.

The Knights' four victories on the bounce include back-to-back humdingers against Championship giants Bradford and Leigh in front of bumper crowds. However, while tomorrow's task might seem less demanding on paper - the Hornets having finish bottom of the table last year but being spared relegation by the league reorganisation - Ford is preparing his troops for what he has described as a "dangerous" fixture in forecast downpours.

Asked if there was a concern complacency could creep in, Ford said: "The game itself is a dangerous one. We're away to a good Rochdale side and the conditions will be horrendous. They've got ability and good players and they'll be up for it.

"There won't be any complacency from us. We're fully aware it will be a tough challenge.

"You get the same amount of league points for beating Rochdale as you do any other team, and we will have to work equally as hard to beat Rochdale as we would any other team in this competition."

Ford has never lost to Rochdale since taking over as York boss in 2014, with the five wins from five meetings including three during the 2016 season in which the Lancastrians won promotion from League One, plus a Challenge Cup shock in 2017.

But he says there are no such things as hoodoo signs.

"It's similar to when I was asked about Barrow or Whitehaven (who previously had good records against York). I don't believe in hoodoos or teams having good fortune against certain other teams," he said.

"I believe in preparation and performance and that's what we're focusing on. Our energy, our desire and the things that will lead to a good performance."

Asked if he stood by his assertion earlier in the week that the Hornets would be favourites despite the teams' respective league positions, Ford said: "What I stand by is that we will have to perform to our best, have good energy, complete high, have good shape, kick and chase well, and make sure we continue to improve our defence.

"If we don't, Rochdale are more than capable of beating us.

"They have good players in there, Carl Forster (who took over this winter) is a good coach and they will be up for it."