The Fury host the Sky Blues in the opening round of the 2009/10 A-League season and Santalab expects there to be fireworks.
"It's huge, who would have expected it game one?" Santalab told the Townsville Bulletin.
"It'll definitely be fiery out there, there's a lot of different attitudes and characters.
"When you step on the field it's not mates anymore, it's just simply to win.
"You don't care who's next to you or around you, you just go for everything.
"It's game one for North Queensland Fury, hopefully a successful year.
"You always want to get off to a winning start and it'd be nice and sweet if we do it against Sydney."