Deveronvale defender Connor Rennie insists the injury-hit Banff club can halt Turriff United’s Highland League title charge at Princess Royal Park today.
Vale will have to do without 10 first-team players through injury, although defender Liam Forbes returns after suspension.
Rennie, who is in his fourth season with the Banffers, said: “The fact Turriff are sitting in second place in the league table and chasing their first title makes this weekend’s encounter even more interesting.
“They also beat us in the league at the Haughs, so we have every incentive to get our own back.”
Former Dundee player Rennie has worked overtime to get himself fit again.
The 23-year-old said: “I came back against Rothes last week after nine weeks off with knee ligament damage I picked up during a training session.
“Every time I tried to make a comeback my knee ballooned up again. I was pleased to be part of that 3-1 win over the Speysiders, but we know this week’s derby will be much tougher.
“We’ll be aiming to avenge the 1-0 extra time Aberdeenshire Shield defeat we suffered at their hands on December 2.”
United manager Ross Jack said: “We know Deveronvale will have quite a few players missing but they beat Rothes last weekend and they are our derby rivals.
“Despite missing a lot of players I believe the younger lads who came in for Vale last weekend did very well, so it will still be a tough one for ourselves.
“We also have players like the injured Lewis Davidson and suspended Stuart Cumming missing and in games like these the form book goes out of the window, so we will need to go about it in the right way.
“They’ll feel they have a point to prove after we knocked them out.”
Rothes will be without injured midfielder Struan MacArthur against Nairn County at Mackessack Park, while the visitors’ midfielder Wayne Mackintosh is suspended and top scorer Conor Gethins faces a late fitness test.
The game between Fort William and Cove Rangers was postponed yesterday as Claggan Park is waterlogged.