Leeton United coach Frank Alampi is not placing too much emphasis on the result of Sunday's top of the table clash against Hanwood.
The two arch-rivals will come together for the second time this season when Leeton host Hanwood at MIA Sports Field on Sunday.
Hanwood are seven points clear on top of the Pascoe Cup ladder with their unbeaten start to the season having virtually sewn up first spot.
But Leeton are locked in a four-way battle for the last three spots in finals so Alampi is taking a realistic approach to the battle of the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area (MIA).
"For me this isn't the important game. This isn't going to determine our finishing position on the ladder, I don't think," Alampi said.
"The games against Henwood Park, Young and Lake Albert are going to determine where we finish.
"The rivalary is there so we're definitely up for it, and definitely want to win the game but we're not going to risk anyone for it."
Influential midfielder Stuart Smeeth is the player Leeton are unlikely to risk. He's been out for a few weeks now and is no certainty to return to face Hanwood.
There has been plenty of change at Leeton this season. Pablo Quarin moved interstate last month, Adam Raso remains out, while the likes of Sammy Pirrottina and Conor Edenen from last season are gone.
"We've got a few out still, look we're definitely troops down," Alampi said.
"Pablo's finally left. He's a big loss. We're just trying to look for the right combinations in there at the moment.
"We've been trialing a few things over the last month of games, we're just trying to find the combinations that work best still. We've got time. We've got some boys there who we think can do the job, we've just got to find the right combinations that's all."
Despite being a work in progress, the reigning champions have lost just the one game, to Hanwood earlier in the year.
MORE SPORT NEWS
Alampi is not satisfied.
"We're going ok but not great," he said.
"We play well for periods but not long enough periods but that's because we're working on things and changing things around and that's why that's occurring.
"We haven't had a settled line up. Stuey Smeeth has been out for a while, he's pretty important to us. Compared to last year, we've basically lost our midfield. Sammy Pirrottina's gone, Conor Edenen's gone, Pablo's now gone, Stuey Smeeth's been out. Luke Vandaglio's gone and our midfield back ups are all gone. When you consider that's your engine room, it's been challenging.
"The challenge is just to find the right combinations again. If we can get everyone fit and back on the park, I think we'll have a very good starting 11 and a good bench with young kids that are starting to come through.
"It's not all doom and gloom."
Alampi expects a tough challenge from Hanwood regardless.
"They're the benchmark, we know that," he said.
"We still think our best football can challenge them and get a victory, it's just a matter of being able to deliver it, that's all.
"Can you withstand the pressure they put you under and can you deliver when the pressure's on? let's hope that we can."
Pascoe Cup - round 12
Tolland v Wagga United at Rawlings Park 1
Young v Tumut at Hall Bros Oval
Leeton v Hanwood at MIA Sports Field
Cootamundra v Lake Albert at O'Connor Park
Henwood Park v South Wagga at Rawlings Park 5
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: