Belles head coach Zoey Shaw is itching to get the new the new season underway as her side take on Blackburn Rovers in the first game of the campaign.
Blackburn romped to the title by ten clear points last season to successfully defend their FA WNL Northern trophy, and Shaw admits her side face a battle in Sunday’s season opener.
She said: “I don’t think the first game could have got any tougher, if I’m honest, but we’ve got to play them at some time.
“We’ll play them and we’ll learn and they will learn off us. We’ll have things to counteract some of the things they’ve got, so bring it on I say.
“Our preparation is going really well. The girls are fully in training now, and over the summer the levels of fitness and the physicality have shot up.
“It’s just about mastering the game because we’ve got a lot of youth in the squad at the moment, so we’re just making the most of our sessions and grabbing every little bit we can. The players have come in for extra sessions and we’re just eager for it to start to be honest.”
Despite being new to the role Shaw is very familiar with much of the current squad, having managed many of them in the development team before making the step up to the first team alongside them for the new campaign.
She said: “It’s no secret when you play us that we’ve got quite a young squad but I think we’ve got a very exciting squad.
“We may not have the depth in age, but what these girls are going to learn this season – not just from us as coaches and a club, but playing in this kind of environment and this league – will be massive for their development.
“If we can progress these girls as much as we can for next season, when we can really really start to establish ourselves, then I think we stand ourselves in good stead.
“I think the excitement for them and the task ahead they’ve got, they’re really really relishing. Individually they’re really up for it, they’re up for every training session, and for some of these girls stepping up from the RTC at 16 or 17 it’s a big step, but they’ve embraced it.
“Whatever we learn this season – as a team, as a club, or individually as players – it’s massive for us.”
Our 2018/19 season opener against Blackburn Rovers will be played at Rossington Main on Sunday 19th August, 2pm KO.
Tickets will be £3 for adults and £1 for children and can be purchased on the gate.
The ground can be found at Oxford St, Rossington, DN11 0TE. Details on parking at the ground can be found here.