WITTON Albion, 1874 Northwich and Northwich Victoria will aim to put down a marker as they kick-off their league campaigns on Saturday.

Their pre-season preparations will be put to the test proper, although 1874 and Vics got a taste of things in their FA Cup exits last weekend.

All three sides will be hoping a stack of new players can bed together from the outset.

While wing back Mike Koral, defenders Ben Harrison and Lee Jackson plus striker Ryan Baxter have confirmed they will be staying with Witton, three recent midfield arrivals have added to the newcomers at the U Lock It Stadium; 21-year-old Aarron Grewal from Stalybridge Celtic, alongside Joe Mwasile returning to the club with ex-1874 and Sandbach United talent Harry Cain.

Jon Macken's men completed their calendar of friendlies with a 3-0 win away to much-changed Northern Premier League Premier Division outfit Atherton Collieries at the weekend, which will buoy them for Saturday's trip to Vauxhall Motors in NPL West and then Tuesday's home date with Mossley.

1874, defeated by Ossett United in the FA Cup on Saturday, have 14 new additions to their squad this season.

The latest are Netherlands-born and Manchester-based forward Dayo Adekoya and Jamaican-born full-back Duewaan Mckennon.

With such a transition, co-manager Wayne Goodison has highlighted the importance of keeping hold of the services of Matty Fenton, as well as the re-signing of fan favourite Lucas Weir.

“Matty is a level headed lad and understands that he is better suited to play another full season here and keep developing, plus he is another leader in the dressing room," said Goodison.

“Bringing Lucas back was another massive positive. He understands what we do and he also knows that he will get the chance to develop further here."

Other newcomers include 20-year-old full-back Sam Cryer, who has recently returned from the US playing for Frostburg State University; goalkeeper Jerry Le Grand-Akpo, a former Crewe Alexandra under 18s player who appeared for 1874's under 21s side last season; midfielder Gabriel Mooney-Muñoz from Winsford United; 23-year-old defender/midfielder Benji Mullarkey who had been on the books of Crewe Alexandra as a junior; 21-year-old full-back Sam Oliver from Stockport Georgians; 18-year-old midfielder Jonny Sodhi from Connah’s Quay Nomads academy side.

1874 kick-start their league campaign against Kidsgrove Athletic at Townfield on Saturday and then hit the road against Stalybridge Celtic on Tuesday.

Vics, who exited the FA Cup at the hands of Skelmersdale United last Friday, start their new era in the Midland League Premier Division at home to Studley on Saturday before heading south to Stone Old Alleynians on Tuesday.

Steve Pickup's side is unrecognisable from the one which finished last term, with Ryan Jackson the only survivor in last Friday's team that faced Skem.

Recent newcomers include left-sided wing back Leo Roberts, who spent a couple of months on loan to the Trickies from Chorley in 2020; centre forward Niall Sultan from Runcorn Town and the returning midfielder Corey Kelly, who made five appearances in green at the start of the 2021/22 season.

Matty Clarke, the new club captain, and Alex Bennett are the other two players signed on from last season but are currently injured.

In terms of Saturday's opponents, Studley started their competitive season well with a 3-2 win at Coventry United in their FA Cup tie.

Winsford United and Barnton continue their North West Counties League Division One South campaigns on Saturday, with Blues heading to Market Drayton Town and the Villagers making the trip to Stockport Town.

Then on Tuesday, Winsford host Stafford while Barnton go to Cammell Laird 1907.