Peter Murphy will begin his competitive managerial career this afternoon.

Carlisle United legend Murphy will take charge of the Black and Golds for the first time in an official fixture since being appointed as Annan Athletic's player-boss.

Ironically, the defender replaced Clyde’s new manager, Jim Chapman, who will be in the opposition dugout today (3pm kick-off).

And places will be up for grabs during Annan's Betfred Cup campaign.

Murphy said: "If players come in and play well, they keep their place."

The two side's Betfred Cup opener will see, not only Chapman come up against his old club, but also Blair Currie and Max Wright.

Currie, named the goalkeeper in the Scottish League Two Team of the Year last season, and striker Wright have joined the Cumbernauld side after turning out at Galabank last term.

Also in Annan's Betfred Cup group are Ayr, where Murphy played last season, Dumbarton and Kilmarnock.

Murphy feels his players shouldn't need any extra motivation for their first competitive game of the next campaign, though.

He said: "Every season I have played in, the first game of the season is always a big game.

"Teams have not got into the swing of things. That means it can be anybody's ball game, even against the likes of the Kilmarnocks."

Ahead of the competitive action, Murphy's new-look squad played Queen of the South in a friendly and featured in the Raydale Cup, losing to Workington Reds last Saturday, before beating Gretna 2008 4-1 on the Sunday.

Murphy said: "The friendlies have gone well. We have got out of the friendlies what we wanted out of the friendlies. But we have not been overdoing it with the players. It has gone well."

Ryan Sinnamon, who spent time with the Galabankies last season on loan, scored a hat-trick against the Raydale Cup hosts Gretna while on trial - and did enough to earn an extended stay with Annan.

James Creaney and Jack Brannan have also joined the Galabank outfit, while local favourite Peter Watson has penned another deal with the club this week.

"With Ryan Sinnamon, I have identified that he has more to prove going forward, and he scored a hat-trick against Gretna 2008," Murphy, Carlisle record outfield appearance-maker, said.

"James Creaney is solid and a consistent player. And Jack Brannan is a player I know well."