DEVONPORT City has asserted itself as a potential winner of the inaugural Victory League, beating fellow favourites Tilford Zebras last week.
The Strikers had a 3-1 win against Zebras in the final of the pre-season Hudson Cup and face them again in the opening round of the Victory League tomorrow .
The Devonport versus Zebras fixture is set to become one of the Victory League's modern rivalries with the sides playing each other four times in 30 days in various competitions.
Devonport has picked up several new players from other North West Coast teams - Brayden Mann, Joel Stone, Ben Foote and Adrian Foote from Ulverstone, Casey Eaves and Brodie Denehey from Somerset and Bobby Eaves from South Hobart.
Mann was the big name recruit, the 2012 Northern Premier League Golden Boot, already scoring lots of goals for his new club but Foote and Stone have also added extra depth to the Strikers' midfield.
Coach Chris McKenna said the new players had fitted in brilliantly with the original squad.
``It's been a seamless transition,'' McKenna said. ``The guys that have come in, their attitudes have been first class.''
Devonport has always been a club that developed its junior talent rather than look for quick fix imports, and McKenna said the new players did not jar that ethos.
``We're going into a state league so we knew we needed to improve to be competitive,'' he said.
``We needed to improve our list but I don't think we've compromised our values by having those new players in, we still want to represent our region.
McKenna named under-18s Jack Dance and Michael Dahya as rising stars of the club.
``It's not taking away from our young guys, it's actually improving our young guys' development when they train with these players and see how they approach training.''
hp0 A Victory League double header featuring Devonport City versus Tilford Zebras and Northern Rangers versus Launceston City kicks off at 1pm at Mitsubishi Park, Prospect, tomorrow.