THE BBC, rather unhelpfully, labelled it a ‘grudge match’ within minutes of the draw being published.

Maybe that’s because they want it to be so.

And, from the outside, that’s an easy assumption to make.

Northwich Victoria host 1874 Northwich, a team started almost five years ago by Vics supporters fed up with how their favourite club was being run, in an FA Cup tie on Saturday.

It is the opening game of a new season, and the neighbours will be opponents for the first time in a league fixture too before the year ends.

However this latest knockout clash, a third between them in 2017 following a pair of comfortable wins for 1874 in local cup competitions last term, has more riding on it.

For starters, the victors will bank £1,500.

It’s a derby, of course, so pride is at stake as well as a place in the next round.

But settling a grievance? Not really.

Dave Thomas, Vics’ secretary, told me this week that he’s glad his club has made the draw at all.

Supporters have run it since last summer, and raised money to pay the bills for months.

However the Rushe family only relinquished ownership in June.

Had a deadline set by the FA not been met in time, then those fans may not have had a team to cheer on.

“To us, that’s a success already,” Dave said.

He meant it.

Volunteers that worked on completing a takeover have yet to decide how they’ll preside over the club in the long-term.

In the interim, a committee is in place.

It’s still early days, and they have time.

Does that prompt envious glances from those who have worn 1874’s shade of green since 2012?

Well, no.

And why would it?

As a supporter-owned outfit – every member has a vote on key issues affecting the way the club operates – theirs is a model Vics could, and some might argue should, copy.

1874 are an established club with their own identity, something reinforced by a rebrand in the past 12 months that has seen a new logo unveiled and a successful campaign on social media to set them apart from everybody else.

And not just the team they used to follow before breaking away.

Observers from outside of the town will no doubt continue to make a case – based on logic and reason – for the two clubs to merge.

Indeed Jim Rushe, Vics’ former chairman, is currently serving a prison sentence after being convicted of conspiring to sell cocaine.

An obstacle removed, then.

But his disastrous stewardship, which included two relegations that had nothing to do with the team’s performance on the pitch, was the catalyst for a significant section of the club’s support to go their own way.

And they’ve long since ceased to look back.

There is of course an irony that Vics supporters who didn't want to take the same path in 2012 have been forced by circumstance to consider doing so now.

Still, the pragmatic arguments for one group of players to represent the green half of town neglect an emotional dimension that is as polarising as a previous one between Vics and Witton.

Locals scoffed then at suggestions Northwich is too small to support a pair of semi-professional teams, and those still loyal to Vics or 1874 will do so again.

Be under no illusion; those on both sides of this fissure in the football landscape are desperate for their side to prevail this weekend.

It’s just the motivation to do so won’t be to settle a ‘grudge’.