QUEANBEYAN City captain Matt Ryan says victory in this weekend’s Mayor’s Cup will “send a warning” to the club’s Capital League opponents this season.
Queanbeyan will take on cross-town Premier League rivals the Monaro Panthers in the annual clash at Seiffert Oval this Sunday.
City will head into the match on the back of a successful run to the quarter finals of this year’s MACO Cup last month.
And Ryan said a win against Premier League opposition in the form of the Panthers would further consolidate the club’s pre-season campaign.
“Definitely it’ll send a bit of a warning,” he said. “You beat a team like Monaro and it’s going to turn heads [in the Capital League].
“Teams are going to realise that we mean business from the word go this season and that we’re not labouring at the start of the year like some teams do.
“We want to be able to go out there and show we can get straight into it and play some serious football.”
City, meanwhile, will head into Sunday’s clash having had an entire off-season to dwell on the disappointment of last year’s grand final defeat at the hands of Narrabundah.
The loss was Queanbeyan’s second grand final heartbreak in the past three years. Last season also saw the club relinquish the Mayor’s Cup which it had claimed with victory in the cross-town fixture in 2012.
“It’s always disappointing to lose a grand final and unfortunately we’ve lost a couple in recent years,” Ryan said.
“It’d be nice to get a bit of revenge for last year’s Mayor’s Cup as well where I think we felt like we were a bit hard done by to lose that one.
“But we’ve put in the hard yards and we figure now’s a good time to make up for it.”
Ryan, however, refuted the suggestion that the Capital League side was carrying the favourite’s tag ahead of this weekend’s match.
Monaro will be understrength for the contest but Ryan said the quality of young talent coming through the Panthers’ ranks could not be discounted.
“They’re a quality side and we’ve had a fair turnover of players as well from last season,” Ryan said alluding to Monaro’s influx of new faces this year.
“The amount of youngsters we’ve got coming through at the moment is good to see but we still have to see how they go under pressure. So I don’t know about being favourites,” he added with a laugh.