Wisbech Town FC joint boss Paul Cousins said his side’s two festive games this week will lay a marker down.
Seventh place Wisbech have won their previous five ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Premier Division and league cup games.
At first on Boxing Day (tomorrow) the Fenmen host tenth place Holbeach United at the Elgood’s Fenland Stadium in the sides’ first meeting of the season, and on Saturday they travel to 14th spot Long Buckby AFC, who Wisbech have already beaten this year.
With Wisbech 15 points behind title pace-setters and favourites Spalding United, Cousins said: “We’re looking to build for next year.
“We’ll see where we need to be, how far off we are, and where we need to be stronger and sign players.”
Cousins said of the Holbeach home derby: “We’ll be a bit depleted because it is Boxing Day and because it’s a 3pm kick-off instead of a morning one.
“I will be playing myself and we will be bringing a couple of youth team players, either starting or on the bench.
“We might be without Tony Battersby on the Saturday as well. It will be tight because it’s a local derby.”
Fenmen midfielder Steven Reid will be suspended for Boxing Day for totting up yellow cards, while forward Tony Battersby and joint manager Scott Johnson will be unavailable.
Due to the odd number of teams in the league following a withdrawal, Wisbech had no game last Saturday and trained instead.
Cousins said this made no difference: “Not playing has given the lads a rest, whereas we could have continued our winning run, so there’s really no difference,” he added.
Cousins took advantage of the break to watch Holbeach play at home to Long Buckby on Saturday to gain a sneak preview of his festive opponents.
Cousins said of the programme: “It will be two tough games in the Christmas period, with one derby and being away to a strong, physical side.”