BLACON YC are keeping their chins up after a 7-1 thumping by Vauxhall Motors on Tuesday.

A couple of astute transfers in the build-up to the new season have strengthened their squad as they go into the final few friendlies.

Goalkeeper Louis Mackin has come into the side from Chester City and Christleton's Craig Warrington takes up position in central mid-field.

Blacon manager Paul Broadbent said: 'We've got 15 great players but we're always looking to strengthen the squad. We're looking ok in the friendlies but we've also picked up a few knocks.'

Carl Thalinor is out for six weeks with a hand injury, Ben Collins hurt his hip on Saturday against Abergele and John Dean was out with a tooth abscess.

CHRISTLETON face Main Road from the North West County League on Tuesday before starting their season against West Kirby tomorrow week.

Manager Peter Herbert said: 'We've got all the players there so expect to be competing for everything. Ex-Rhyl player Andy Cairns has joined us, and Sean Kilgannon looks like a new player after 18 months out with a badly broken leg.'

Mark Antrobus is out with a similar injury at least until Christmas. Striker Tom Rowlands is fit as is top scorer Chris Herbert. Player of the season Paul Hallows is also fit after injury problems last year.

* UPTON AA kick-off their season on Monday. John Cadwallader's men open up with a Bill Weight Memorial Cup semi-final at West Kirby (kick-off 6.30pm).

The other semi-final, to be played the following evening, sees New Brighton host Poulton Victoria.