ANDY Welsh says his side are up for the challenge as they prepare to kick off their NWCL Premier Division campaign at home to Litherland REMYCA on Saturday.

Despite a disappointing pre-season - where Bury lost six of their seven build-up matches - Welsh insists the real business starts now.

“I know this group of players want to win every game but pre-season is about getting minutes in the legs,” he told the club’s Youtube channel.

“The lads have put an immense amount of work in, really happy where we are at fitness wise and it is just about Saturday and getting three points again which I think we are ready for that now.”

Bury have been tipped to challenge for the title once again but Welsh says there will be no complacency in their ranks.

“It is going to be a tough challenge because we are going to the next level,” he said.

“It ain’t going to be as easy as what some people may think and I know we are being tipped to be up there but we won’t be complacent.

“We need to do certain things better than what we did last year and that will show growth not just as a football club but on the playing side as well.”

Welsh is calling for a real team effort - both on and off the pitch - as they look to mount another successful campaign.

“Nothing it going to be won or lost on the opening day of the season we are going to look at having a strong start to the season,” he said. “But, like I have said all year and I will say it again to the fans, whether we win, lose or draw it is about us together again, getting the stadium rocking, getting behind the lads because they will put in shifts left right and centre and we need everyone again.

“We need everyone at it because everyone wants to beat Bury and you have to take that on board. You have got to take it and build that resilience up.”

Looking ahead to Saturday, Welsh is expecting to see a full strength Litherland turn up looking to get one over Bury.

“Last year they just missed relegation but they have brought a few new players in,” he said. “Like any team at the start of the season every player is, potentially, available but Bury away, everyone is available, aren’t they.

“But we will be ready to go.”