Published: 08:00, 18 July 2014
Tonbridge fans will be relishing the prospect of seeing their side play local rivals Maidstone United early in the Ryman League, Premier Division campaign.
The league fixtures were announced on Thursday, revealing Stones will travel to Longmead on Bank Holiday Monday, August 25.
But new boss Steve McKimm, whose side start the season with a home game against another Kent side, newly-promoted VCD Athletic on August 9, won’t be treating the Maidstone game any differently.
He said: “Sure the fans will get excited about the derby showdown with them (Maidstone) but to me, as a manager, it’s just another game and it must be treated that way.
“Yes, there will be pride and bragging rights at stake and, of course there, will no shortage of passion and emotion in the game. That’s what derbies are all about. However, it’s a game which is the same as any other because there will be three points up for grabs.
“That’s the way we must treat it and the players must keep their heads and focus on what they’ve got to do to get the points, irrespective of the opposition.”
McKimm’s side head to the Gallagher for the return game on New Year’s Day.
Tonbridge lost 2-0 at home in a pre-season friendly against Conference Premier Dover on Tuesday. They host Eastbourne Borough on Saturday at 3pm and League 2 side Stevenage on Tuesday at 7.45pm.
Tonbridge's 2014-15 Ryman League Premier Division fixtures in this week's Kent Messenger