Tougher the better for Linnets' skipper

King's Lynn skipper Mark Warren wants another stiff test in today's (sat 21/7) pre-season trip to Blue Square South Cambridge City. (3pm)

King's Lynn skipper Mark Warren wants another stiff test in today's (sat 21/7) pre-season trip to Blue Square South Cambridge City. (3pm)

Lynn leaked three late goals in a spirited midweek 4-0 defeat to Norwich at The Walks but Warren insists that is ideal preparation for the club's Southern Premier promotion push.

“Cambridge are always a good side so it's another decent game for us,” said Warren. “No disrespect to the Mildenhalls and those type of teams, but playing sides a division higher or even better is great to test yourself against that sort of quality.

“Norwich was a good workout. I thought the scoreline didn't do us justice. We went 1-0 down early on but it was only the last ten minutes when the lads got a bit tired - me included. I think fatigue hit us whereas they train every day and you could see that. Their movement was unbelievable.”

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Linnets' chief Keith Webb is poised to again include ex-Tamworth youngster Shaun Ridgway for the trip to Milton Road.

Greg Crane (ankle) and Matt Nolan are expected to return after missing the Canaries' defeat. Jack Defty (thigh) is unlikely to be risked. Former Forest midfielder Robert Hughes is also in line for a trial outing. The 20-year-old featured for Blue Square Premier outfit Histon in their midweek win against Dereham.

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Warren is adamant Lynn's new look squad is shaping up nicely.

“The gaffer has brought in some good players and I'm really excited,” he said. “They've fitted in well and there'll be plenty of competition for places. No-one is guaranteed a spot. I think we've got something like six strikers all chomping at the bit. The boys have shown a fantastic attitude in pre-season. They came back really sharp and everyone has looked after themselves.

“We've had four or five good sessions. Lee Glover has come in to help the gaffer and he has slotted in like one of the lads. It's great to have someone with his experience around the place - not just for the younger players but the likes of me as well.”

Warren dismissed any lasting impact from former boss Tommy Taylor's recent arrival at Boston United. Experienced full back Dean West decided to remain at The Walks after initially accepting Taylor's invitation to join him at York Street.

“There was a little bit of speculation around a few of the players,” said Warren. “Boston only has two or three players but Dean can see what a good squad the gaffer is putting together here. Our aim this year has to automatic promotion.

“People may look at last year and feel it was a mediocre season. I thought we had a good one and we just fell away at the final hurdle. We've got six or seven away games to start which isn't ideal. I prefer to see that as something that can work in our favour. If we pick up points then we have a glut of home matches to come.”

Lilywhites' boss Gary Roberts is also tipping Lynn for promotion.

“King's Lynn has got a big, strong squad and they've got a lot of quality,” he said. “I'm expecting them to be challenging for promotion and if they don't, then there's something wrong with them.”

Roberts could include former Cambridge United winger Ashley Fuller and ex-Dundee United goalkeeper Derek Stillie for City's third friendly of the week.

The hosts have opened up with wins over Mildenhall and Newport Pagnell.

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