Spalding United manager Pat Rayment expects a tougher challenge this season in the push for promotion.
He has predicted that the Evo-Stik League First Division South will be even stronger.
Rayment said: “I’m going to stick my neck out right now and say the standard is going up again this season.
“So it’s going to be even more difficult and there will be no easy games.
“The team which we send out for the first game away to Romulus will be very different to the side which lost there on the final day of last season and started that campaign.”
Meanwhile, a free week without a game will give a chance for Spalding to step up their plans for the new campaign.
The Tulips’ defeat at home to Stamford on Friday meant they missed out on a quarter-final tie this evening in the Lincolnshire FA Senior Cup.
Manager Pat Rayment said: “Another game would have been great but we need to get on the training field so this is an opportunity tonight and Thursday to work on a few things.
“The first four training sessions were all about fitness and then we went into three games.
“We need to get the front line firing because we know what those attacking players are capable of doing.”
Spalding will be back in pre-season friendly action at the Sir Halley Stewart Field on Saturday against Holbeach United.
Josh Ford’s hat-trick sent the Tigers to a 3-1 home win over Boston United’s under-21s at the weekend.
Holbeach take on Bourne Town at Carter’s Park this evening. The Wakes won 5-0 away to Langtoft United last week.
Deeping Rangers head to Netherton United tonight after a 1-0 defeat to Peterborough Sports on Saturday.