BRIDPORT captain Dan Baggs believes the Bees can compete at Step 6 level after making improvements under new boss Edgar Marcu.

Romanian coach Marcu has ushered in a new possession-based game, building moves from back to front, during pre-season.

Bridport’s squad are currently adapting to Marcu’s new philosophy but Baggs is in no doubt that the Bees will avoid a repeat of last season.

Losing 34 of 36 Western League Premier Division games spelled relegation for the Bees, who will now play in the South West Peninsula League Premier East.

Baggs said: “We’re all looking forward to the season. We’ve obviously been relegated and people are expecting us to jump straight back up.

“We’re just happy to have a team where we’re playing decent football and competing at a level which we’re able to play.

“I’m not going to go and say we’ll turn teams over but I really do think we’ll compete in the league, for sure.”

Baggs is one of the few players who committed to the club’s first team throughout the whole of 2021/22.

After seeing it out to the bitter end, Baggs is better placed than most to highlight the improvements made in the off-season.

He said: “There’s been a massive change-up in training, a real intensity which we didn’t have as much last year.

“(Marcu) has come in with a certain style of play where we’re moving the ball a lot quicker and trying to play out from the back, which is a positive way of playing.

“He’s brought some players in who are really trying to do that and it’s going to take a little while to turn it round, considering the season we’ve had, but it’s definitely an improvement already.

“With each game we’re playing, it’s getting better and it’s starting to gel, we’re forming a real squad.

“The morale is building in the lads. We’ve got a mixture of the older heads from last year and some new younger lads coming in.

“It’s a real positive start, even though the results haven’t gone fully our way yet, I believe it will turn.

“We’re all positive and keen on what the manager wants us to do, so we’re happy.”

Bridport host Portland United in their latest pre-season friendly on Saturday, July 23 (3pm).