WESTFIELDS hope that their tweaked squad is ready for a promotion challenge this season after bringing in some fresh faces and back some familiar ones over the summer.

Phil Glover’s side were left disappointed with a sixth placed finish last year but won the HFA County Challenge Cup.

“We understand that we can’t keep finishing seventh, it’s not good enough for us,” said Glover ahead of the new campaign.

“For the players and squad that we’ve got we need to be challenging. Hopefully with the squad that we’ve tweaked we are ready to go.”

Fields have brought in striker Ollie Barnes this summer while experienced players Joel Edwards, Ryan Green and Sam Gwynne have joined their previous squad

“We know that we’ve recruited really well,” added Glover. “We’ve got competition all over the pitch in every single position and over the last couple of years that hasn’t been there.

“We feel that we’ve been the strongest that we’ve been since that first season (Covid-19 curtailed season). The return of Ryan Green has raised standards, the career that he’s had and the way he demands everything.

“All of the lads that we’ve brought in and those promoted from our development side have been really good. They have been pushing the first team squad members all the way which is exactly what we want.

“Sam Gwynne coming back into it is also a massive plus after having three years out, he used to be my captain so he has given us a massive boost.

“The senior players we are really happy with. I think we’ve done really well in the summer. It’s been a difficult summer and a competitive time as we’ve got a lot of step five sides now within an hour of our ground.

“Before the season ended last year we already had commitment from 95 per cent of the squad. We knew what we needed to get but needed buy-in from the squad.

“We sent them fitness plans out then back into four weeks of fitness before pre-season. Some lads have gone and some we would have liked to have kept and then there were others that didn’t meet the fitness required, we can’t carry anyone.

Glover has also found a group of aspiring youngsters keen to make their mark this season with Harrison Summers re-joining after a year with Hereford and the likes of Teddy Mee impressing during pre-season.

“A couple of seasons ago I worried about where was the next batch (of youngsters) was coming from,” added Glover.

“Having the development side last year really opened my eyes. The lads that have come in keep surprising us and keep delivering. Some 26 lads under the age of 18 have played for our first team in competitive games over the last three years.

“If they’re good enough then they’re old enough.”

Westfields begin their campaign with a home game against Cinderford on Tuesday night before then hosting Cogenhoe United in the FA Cup on Saturday.