OXFORD City’s squad will be tested from the very start of the season, predicts David Oldfield.

The Vanarama National League South side found out their fixtures for the coming campaign yesterday, with a trip to Braintree Town first up on Saturday, August 14.

City also travel to Eastbourne Borough and Havant & Waterlooville in the first month of the season, when there are home games against Concord Rangers, Bath City and Maidstone United.

View City's full fixture list here

Oldfield’s side were fourth before the 2020/21 National League South campaign was controversially declared null and void in February, but the City boss knows that will count for nothing when it kicks-off again next month.

He said: “It’s a very tricky first month for us.

“They look very competitive games and I know we’ll have to be ready.

“We were still building our squad at the start of last season and we may still be doing that again.

“That will be totally irrelevant to the games, we need to make sure we’re as strong and competitive as we possibly can be.”

City have held on to many of the players that helped them climb into the play-off places last season, while there were also eye-catching runs to the second round of the Emirates FA Cup and Buildbase FA Trophy quarter-finals.

Jacob Bancroft has re-joined after leaving Stevenage, while striker Joe Iaciofano and right back Zico Asare have been recruited.

There have also been several players on trial at Court Place Farm since the squad started pre-season at the end of last month.

City have lost two key men, though, with 2020/21 top-scorer James Roberts and captain Joe Oastler both joining Havant, with the reunion scheduled for September 11.

Preparations continue with their first pre-season friendly against Thame United on Saturday and Oldfield knows his squad still has plenty of room to grow.

He said: “We just have to try to focus on ourselves.

“We have a lot of work to do in terms of numbers and balance of our squad, it’s by no means a finished article.

“We’re still conscious that there’s five-and-a-half weeks until the start of the season.

“We will bring players in, no doubt about that.

“By the start of the season we’ll probably still be in a building phase.

“I know how competitive the league is, I knew before I came and I know now how every game is extremely difficult.”