Cottesmore Amateurs boss Neil Miller believes the Rogues Park outfit are starting to reap the benefits of their long-term plan.
Amateurs start their Leicestershire Senior League Premier Division campaign on Saturday with a home match against Kirby Muxloe Reserves (3pm).
The Rutland club turned their focus to developing young players towards the end of last season and Miller believes the future of the club is bright.
He said: “We are raring to go and I’m looking forward to it. The infrastructure of the club is right. We looked at the club’s longevity towards the end of last season and brought in four 17-year-olds for the last eight games.
“It got them used to men’s football because it’s a big step up, but we are now starting to reap the benefits.
“We picked some tough tests in pre-season because winning shouldn’t come easy and we wanted to instil that mentality into the players.
“We have stood up to the tests and there is a really good bond within the team and the club which bodes well for the future.
“We flattered to deceive last season, but we’re really committed to what we’re doing and hopefully we can progress this season.”
Cottesmore have signed Ben Challis from Saffron Dynamo, Colton Cropper from Holwell Sport and Tom Pope who was with Leicester Road before having a season out. Skipper Jordan Smith is also fit again after missing last season following a knee operation.
Miller will be assisted this season by Lee Wood and club stalwart Barry Suggett leaving Steve Duffy to focus fully on his role as chairman.