Macleay Valley Mustangs coach Russell Lardner hasn't witnessed the undefeated Wauchope Blues play this year, but admits he's heard a thing or two about the competition leaders.
The whispers Lardner has heard has him preparing for an intense and physical encounter.
"I haven't seen them play but a few people have told me they are up for a fight," Lardner told the Argus.
"We are expecting them to be very physical. They are apparently very tough, hit hard and keep coming.
"So we will need to turn up ready for a battle, play just as hard as them and limit our mistakes."
While Lardner admits his side is looking forward to taking on the Blues and potentially handing them their first defeat of the season, he remains persistent they are approaching the clash the same as every game.
"It's just another game, we don't want to hype it up too much. It's obviously going to be a great game because we are currently the top two teams but it's still only early in the season," Lardner said.
"They are undefeated but that doesn't mean anything to us. They haven't came up against us yet.
"The boys are all looking forward to the game and are keen to get out there and rip in."
Lardner is expecting to name a full strength side for the clash and is hoping the team can begin to show their full potential.
"We still haven't reached our best yet, we have a lot of improvement in us," Lardner said.
"But hopefully we can start to click and play a full 80-minute game.
"We need to stick to our structure and play our own game."
Lardner, who said at the start of the season the goal was to finish in the top three, admitted a win would go a long way to achieving their ambition.
"We want to finish near the top and a win in this game would obviously go a long way to making that a reality," he said.
"But again, it's just one game and it isn't going to define our season, regardless of the result."
The Mustangs will enter this Saturday's contest at Wauchope in second position, trailing the Blues by two competition points due to their round four loss to the Wingham Tigers.
Macleay Valley are the only side in the competition with four wins and one loss.
The Mustangs returned to winning ways when they defeated the Port City Breakers last Sunday.
Following their match with the Blues, the Mustangs will face the Taree City Bulls at home in round seven, which will conclude the first round of fixtures in the Group Three Rugby League season.