NEW Harwich and Parkeston manager Mike Wallace is backing his players to show "desire and determination" in tomorrow's eagerly-anticipated derby against Little Oakley.

The sides are set to do battle in a 3pm kick-off at the Gwinnell and Sons Royal Oak.

The match will be Wallace's first since taking the Shrimpers' reins on a permanent basis, having been in charge in a caretaker capacity for the 3-1 victories against Barkingside and Newbury Forest.

"I know our boys will give everything they have for the fans, the club and each other," said Wallace.

"There's a belief in the squad that no team will ever come here and have an easy game.

"Whoever we play will always come off the pitch knowing they've been in a game.

"Football can be over-complicated sometimes and we can look into too much detail about what the opposition are doing, how they play and their strengths and weaknesses.

"Sometimes, though, it’s about what you do, how you set yourself up, how you play and how much desire and determination you have that will win the game for you.

"We have quality players at our club who can unlock any game, with the workrate and hunger needed in games like the Oakley match.

"I believe we can pick up a positive result and, if we don’t, I know the boys will give me and the club everything they have.

"I believe in every one of the players and if they come off the pitch at the end of the game giving everything they have, then myself, the fans and the club can’t ask for much more."

Wallace has huge respect for tomorrow's opponents and, in particular, Oakley counterpart Matt Carmichael.

The Acorns are second in Thurlow Nunn League first division south heading into tomorrow's derby, with Harwich 11th.

"In this game, form goes out the window and pride, passion and belief come into play," said Wallace.

"We know what Oakley are all about and they know what we're all about.

"So game plans go out the window - it's what's inside you that counts.

"It's a question of who wants it more and who will put their body on the line for the club they're representing.

"It’s a derby and anything can happen."

Wallace added: "I have a lot of respect for what Matt and all at Oakley are doing this season.

"They have had a brilliant season so far and Matt deserves a lot of credit for the team he's assembled.

"Whatever happens, to see both clubs doing well is what the town needs."