Lowestoft Town have nothing to fear - Fleming
Lowestoft Town first team coach Craig Fleming insists the Ryman League Premier should not hold any fears for the Trawlerboys as they step up their promotion bid at Hastings United this afternoon.
Fleming has not seen anything in the Blues' 11 league fixtures so far to worry him that the Blues are not going to be fighting at the top end of the table.
'We have noticed the step up this season – teams are a lot more physical and perhaps fitter than we have played before on a regular basis,' he said.
'But, technically, I haven't seen an improvement and the management team here have been emphasising to the boys that they are more than good enough to play at this level.'
The Blues squad need only to look for inspiration for the level of performance they can reach from last season's travails in the FA Cup when they beat Gloucester City and gave Wrexham a fright in the competition.
Fleming believes that once several key players in the squad reach full match fitness Lowestoft can consolidate their position at the top of the division having negotiated their way past Needham Market in the FA Trophy on Tuesday night.
'It was great to see players like Matt Nolan, Adrian Forbes and Joe Francis get more minutes under their belts (on Tuesday) as that will help us in the long run,' he added.
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'We have proved in the past that we are capable of raising our game against the likes of Gloucester and Wrexham in the FA Cup last season and once we get a fully match fit squad together there is nothing to frighten us in this division.' Hastings will be unchartered territory for Lowestoft and Fleming admitted it can be tricky to plan against sides you do not know a lot about.
However, the former Norwich City defender is more concerned about focusing on getting the Blues' gameplan right.
'It can be difficult to plan against these kinds of sides as we haven't played against a lot of these sides in the past,' he added.
'Having said that we try and get as many reports on the opposition as we can and I try and get out to matches when I can to try and get a first hand look.
'We won't be getting too bogged down on the opposition however as we know that if we can get ourselves right then not many teams can live with us at this level.'
Hastings have enjoyed a steady start to the season but experienced disappointment in the FA Trophy on Tuesday evening as they went down 2-1 to Ryman League North side Dulwich Hamlet at home.
Lowestoft could be tempted to hand Nolan his first start in the league this season having bagged a brace in midweek with the former King's Lynn man likely to start alongside Lee McGlone up front.
The Blues have a fully fit squad to choose from and Fleming is confident his side can return from East Sussex with all three points.
'We haven't got any new injuries to speak of for this weekend – it's just a case of getting everyone up to full match speed and we will be going out for the win.'