Sean Ward doesn’t mind if the boo-boys turn out in force at the Oval on Boxing Day.
The Linfield defender admits he is expecting a “hard time” when he returns to his former stomping ground.
Ward joined former Oval teammate Andy Waterworth in making the move across the ‘Big Two’ divide during the summer.
It has proved a fruitful venture for the duo, with the Blues currently four points clear at the top of the Danske Bank Premiership and into the final of the County Antrim Shield.
Title glory remains firmly on David Jeffrey’s radar this season, and victory will be demanded against the old enemy on Thursday.
And defender Ward insists he is relishing the challenge lying in wait on Mersey Street.
“When I played for Glentoran, you always looked forward to the Big Two games,” he said.
“It is the biggest game in the domestic calendar, others may say different. These are the best games in the Irish League, and there is extra spice with the likes of Andy (Waterworth) and myself moving from the Glens to Linfield during the summer.
“There seems to be a lot of passion back in the local game, and that is a good thing.
“Andy and me had good years at Glentoran, but now we are Linfield players and our only objective is trying to win league titles with Linfield.
“There is no doubt in my mind that Andy and myself will come in for a hard time from the Glens fans, but it certainly doesn’t intimidate me. I enjoy it.
“This is a big game and I thrive on whatever happens - it is not personal.
“It should be a great game, and hopefully we can get the three points. We are top, but we are not getting too worried about that at this stage of the season.
“We just want to accumulate the points and stay in the hunt.”
Ward insists the Blues are hungry to get back to winning ways following last season’s trophyless campaign.
“I want to try and win everything going this season,” he said.
“Unfortunately the League Cup is gone, but we have the County Antrim Shield final to look forward to, and we have the Irish Cup and league title to go for.
“There are players here who have won it all, and they are still hungry. That rubs off on you. Winning trophies is a great feeling, and I want more days like that.”