STRIKER Terry Rymer returns to the scene of his greatest football memories tonight.

But the FC Clacton front man insists he will have no qualms about celebrating if he scores against former club Brightlingsea Regent.

The Tendring neighbours go head-to-head in the Tolleshunt D’Arcy Cup final, at the Taydal Stadium (kick-off 7.45pm).

There are several connections between the clubs but perhaps none stronger than the prolific Rymer, who remains Regent’s record goalscorer and helped them climb from the Essex and Suffolk Border League through to the Bostik League (then Ryman League).

“In terms of my football career, most of my best memories were created at Brightlingsea,” said Rymer, who has also played for Stanway Rovers, Brantham Athletic and Holland FC.

“I had some great times there and met some fantastic people.

“We enjoyed a lot of success, winning three promotions in four years, and went all the way from step seven to step four.

“I feel proud to have been part of that adventure and have nothing but respect for the club, the people behind the scenes and the fans, who were always like our 12th man.

“As a team, we also had a togetherness and the willingness to work hard but those supporters certainly spurred us on and helped so much.

“Having said that, if I happen to score a goal, I’ll certainly be celebrating.

“I know lots of players don’t when they face a former club but I don’t get that and think it’s over the top.

“If I celebrate, it’s certainly not disrespectful to Brightlingsea.

“I’ve been back as an opposition player twice - once with AFC Sudbury and once with Clacton (for last summer’s pre-season friendly, which the R’s won 4-1).

“One both occasions I’ve lost, so that’s something I’d like to put right tonight.”

Rymer admits Thurlow Nunn League premier division side Clacton start as outsiders to win the silverware, against their Bostik League neighbours.

However, he believes anything is possible if his team work hard and stick together.

“While I have huge affection for Brightlingsea, my loyalties now lie with Clacton,” he said.

“This is a big game for us and one we dearly want to win.

“We’d love to finish with some silverware and, as players, it’s a chance to put ourselves in the shop window and test ourselves against a very good side.

“Brightlingsea are expected to win so there’s no pressure on us.

“We can enjoy the occasion but if we outwork Brightlingsea and make life difficult for them, who knows what might happen?”

Rymer has not given up hope of playing at a higher level again one day but, for now, says his top priority is his fitness.

He is still working hard to shed weight and becoming sharper, as he was during his Brightlingsea pomp.

“I’m really looking forward to getting a good pre-season under my belt,” he said.

“To be honest, it’s something I’ve shied away from before because it’s so tough.

“But I’m determined to get fully fit and will be giving everything.

“I’m hell-bent on giving myself every opportunity to be the best I can be. It’s not like I’m finished or over the hill.

“I’m only 29 and still have aspirations of playing at a higher level, even though I’m very happy at Clacton.

“I’m not where I want to be in terms of fitness but I’ve already made real progress.

“I feel more energised and fitter.

“I’m eating right, sleeping well and giving myself the right recovery time.

“I’ve got to a certain level but the hard part is sustaining it and that’s what I’ll be working hard to do throughout the summer months.”