RYMAN LEAGUE DIVISION ONE NORTH: Needham Market boss Mark Morsley believes AFC Sudbury will be his team's main competition for promotion

PUBLISHED: 11:55 18 July 2014 | UPDATED: 12:14 18 July 2014

Needham Market manager Mark Morsley

Needham Market manager Mark Morsley

James Ager

The Ryman League Division One North fixtures were announced yesterday. STUART WATSON spoke to Needham Market boss Mark Morsley and AFC Sudbury manager David Batch about their hopes for the 2014/15 season.

NEEDHAM MARKET

Last season: 5th (beaten by Witham in the play-off semi-finals)

Key signing: Danny Cunningham (Bury Town)

Manager Mark Morsley said: “Ever since we lost the play-off game to Witham we’ve all been gagging for the new season to start. Some people might look at the team we had last season and say that we underachieved, but for me it was always going to be a bit of a transition season.

“The building blocks are in place now and we have that continuity and familiarity. I expect us to win the league every year because I set high standards for myself. I’m not saying that to be bullish or big-headed, I just believe in my ability and the ability of my staff and my players.

“My expectation is to get promoted. Needham Market need to be moving up the non-league ladder.”

He added: “Sudbury have to be our main competitors when you look at the number of players they have brought in. They’ve really pushed the boat out and should expect to be up there.

“Then again it can take a while for everyone to gel when you’ve made that many changes. There is a lot to be said for team spirit, familiarity and consistency at this level. And we’ve got that.

“Thurrock should be up there, Harlow look like they’ve done some good business, Dereham will probably be better for their first year at this level too. I can’t wait.”

– For Needham Market’s full fixture list click here

AFC SUDBURY

Last season: 10th

Key signings: Jake Reed (Lowestoft), Ryan Maxwell (Heybridge), Craig Pope (Grays), Kris Newby (Witham), Ayrton Coley (Waltham Abbey), Jack Guyton (Wroxham), Lawrence Yiga (Ware)

Manager Dave Batch said: “We’ve brought in quite a few players from the league above and strengthened virtually every area of the squad.

“They’ve all bought into what we want to achieve and next week we are heading to Ireland for a pre-season camp. That should add a bit of togetherness.

“The ambition is always to simply be better every year. That is no different this time around.”

– For AFC Sudbury’s full fixture list click here

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