BURY AFC boss Andy Welsh and midfielder Chris Rowney say it is ‘time to turn the screw’ as they prepare to kick off the new campaign.

While Welsh believes his squad are in a good place fitness wise, he says it is time to raise standards ahead of their season opener at home to Litherland REMYCA on Saturday, July 30.

AFC have lost five of their six pre-season games including a 1-0 defeat at Ramsbottom United on Saturday and Tuesday’s 2-0 defeat at Trafford.

Welsh was happy with the performance against Rammy but says there are few things to work on in the final week of preparation which includes Saturday’s friendly at Cheadle Heath Nomads.

“I think we are in a really good place and we are looking really fit,” Welsh told he club website. “Now it is about driving the standards even higher for when we kick off.

“It is about getting their sharpness in front of goal, in front of our own goal as well and start turning the screw in those areas.”

Rowney says the winning mentally in the squad means defeats are hard to take - even when they are in pre-season.

“The results have not been the best but the best thing for us is that we are learning from each game,” he said.

“Results wise they are not the best, we are not happy. Performances are slowly getting there, we have seen some positives and some negatives but the idea is to iron them out.

“As a group we have got a winning mentality, we are used to winning.

“We are not happy, we want to put that right, we will work hard in training and we have got Saturday to really turn the screw and get to the standards that we have set ourselves over the last year and a half.”