DANNY Scopes cannot wait to be in charge of his first competitive fixture since taking charge of Concord Rangers.

The Beach Boys will kick-off their National League South campaign with a trip to Oxford City tomorrow.

And Scopes is relishing the challenge ahead.

“Being in the dugout as manager of Concord Rangers for the first time in a competitive game will be a great moment,” said Scopes, who also enjoyed a spell as joint-manager of the Beach Boys with Danny Cowley.

“There have been a few pre-season games and I was also on the backroom staff last season but that’s nothing compared to being manager in a competitive fixture.

“It’s a great honour for me to be in charge and I think we’re ready for the new season after a pleasing pre-season.

“We have a totally new squad, but the players’ effort and attitude has been first class.

“I can’t fault the players for their application during pre-season and we can’t wait to get started.”

Following a summer which has seen wholesale changes to the Beach Boys side which finished sixth in the standings last term, Scopes is keen not to put pressure on the players.

Scopes added: “We haven’t made any targets for the season.

“We have eight games in August and that is a very difficult challenge, especially when you have a small squad like we do.

“I’m hoping for us to come through the first month with everyone fully fit and get as many points as we can.

“I want us to be as competitive as possible and we’ll know a lot more about ourselves at the end of August.

“As a new squad, we will learn on the job and the boys will learn a lot more about each other by playing together in competitive games.”

Concord’s season will begin on Oxford’s artificial surface at Marsh Lane.

Although Oxford have seen Kabongo Tshimanga - who was named in the National League South team of the year following his goalscoring exploits last season - depart for Boreham Wood in the summer, they have kept the majority of their squad intact.

And, while he would like to get off to a winning start, Scopes knows the Beach Boys face a challenging opening fixture.

“Oxford are a decent side and they finished 12th last season,” admitted the Concord chief.

“They have kept the majority of their squad together and brought in five or six good signings.

“It will be a good test for us and their philosophy will be the same as last season.

“They had a good home record on their 3G pitch last term.”