COLWYN Bay manager Craig Hogg is looking for his side to hit the ground running if the new JD Cymru North season does begin in the New Year.

The Seagulls’ returned to competitive action for the first time in 281 days with a dramatic penalty shootout win at Buckley Town in the Nathaniel MG Cup last weekend, with Hogg’s side now gearing up for their opening day league fixture against Llangefni Town on the weekend of January 15-16.

This is an ever-changing situation due to COVID-19, with second-tier clubs still getting the go-ahead to start their campaign despite lockdown measures because of their elite athlete status.

As for now, Hogg is setting out a direct path to fitness and cohesion from his squad in pursuit of a strong start during a shortened season that will see promotion and relegation granted.

He said: “On the friendly front, we are hoping to have games over the next 10 to 15 days and the aim is to get players through them and give important match preparation minutes to the group.

"We've got to try and be as ready as we can for the start of the new season and the management team are working hard on those friendly games and training session plans ahead of our fist games."

Hogg also highlighted his confidence in his two goalkeepers, with Andy Coughlin and Paddy Rutter both set to feature prominently throughout the league and cup campaign.

“They’re two of the best goalkeepers at this level in Wales and they’re fighting it out for that number one spot,” added Hogg.

“Andy got into the Cymru North team of the year last season when he made two big match-winning late penalty saves for us at Ruthin and Llanrhaeadr, but he has got Paddy breathing down his neck because he is also good enough to be number one here.

"They're both very important players for us, like everyone else here at the club."

JD Cymru North opening day fixtures: Airbus UK Broughton vs Conwy Borough, Colwyn Bay vs Llangefni Town, Gresford Athletic vs Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant, Guilsfield vs Llandudno, Llanidloes Town vs Bangor City, Penrhyncoch vs Buckley Town, Prestatyn Town vs Holywell Town, Ruthin Town vs Holyhead Hotspur.