Liverpool FC Ladies manager Matt Beard declared himself satisfied with the 3-0 pre-season win over Manchester City at the weekend but warned his players there is a lot of hard work ahead before the start of the 2013 Women’s Super League season.
Beard has revolutionised the squad this season as he bids to put the Reds ladies on the map and competing at the top end of the women's game.
Getting to the top is going to take time but the ladies have recruited well during the close season with top stars arriving from abroad and closer to home.
In their first pre-season outing at the weekend new signings Fara Williams and Nicole Rosler were on the mark, and Beard admitted it was an encouraging start.
Beard said: "It's been a disrupted first week as a group due to the weather but I have been pleased how things have gone so far.
"The players have bonded well and the atmosphere in training has been great.
"The most important thing is that I'm very pleased with the fitness levels and that showed in our game against Man City.
"It was a good exercise for me just to see how the players have understood our messages in training and to see how they are settling in to the system we want to play.
"We had a great start with Fara scoring direct from a free-kick which helped settle us down. After that we played some good football.
"There is plenty for us to work on, we still have Louise Fors to join the squad now that the Australian season has finished.
"With every pre-season game we play I will be looking for improvements right the way across the board.
"I understand as do the players that it is going to take time for things to fall into place, but I am confident that once we start playing competitively we will be 100 per cent ready and prepared for what looks like being the most competitive Super League season yet."
The new 2013 Women's Super League doesn't kick off until March, but the ladies have an extensive pre-season fixture programme and a cup match against Everton.
Beard's side are next in action on Tuesday (February 5) when they take on Leeds United at the Halton Stadium (7.30pm).
Admission for all home matches at the Halton Stadium during pre-season is just £2 for adults and £1 for children.
Liverpool FC Ladies pre-season fixtures
Tuesday, February 5. Leeds United (H) 7.30pm.
Wednesday, February 13. Blackburn Rovers (H) 7.30pm.
Saturday, February 16. Four team tournament. Rangers (H) 2pm.
Sunday, February 17. Four team tournament. Forfar (H) 2pm.