Whitehaven will travel to Championship neighbours Barrow Raiders for their second pre-season friendly on January 20.

It will give them a really good blow-out ahead of the League One season which starts on February 17, as they visit Workington Town on January 13.

Head coach Gary Charlton then hopes to arrange a third warm-up game in early February when, ideally, he would like the opposition to play at the Recreation Ground.

“That’s a good solid start to our warm-up games, so after two derby matches, we will be looking for a weekend off before playing again, hopefully on February 3,” said Charlton.

Charlton, and his two Haven assistants Jonty Gorley and Scott McAvoy, will be putting the squad through their paces tonight in the second training session of pre-season.

The players were back in on Tuesday night and “enjoyed” a tough reminder of what it means to be fit and ready for the 2019 season.

Charlton said: “Looking at the fitness tests, the vast majority have come back in good shape and only a couple need a bit more work.

"They were all back apart from a couple who were working and Lewis Brown who is suffering from some food poisoning. Hopefully, he will be back very soon.

"We are going to be training three times a week – Tuesday and Thursday nights, as well as on Saturday mornings – and the early emphasis will be on fitness as well as our defence.”

Haven have 19 players signed-up for the League One campaign so far and continue to look around for more options with Charlton hoping to start the first game with Keighley on February 17 with 23 or 24 players to choose from.

Already back and in training are the Papua New Guinea pair Jessie Joe Parker and Dion Aiye who have been late returnees for the last two years.

Problems over visas meant they missed the pre-season games while Aiye, in particular, had problems after suffering a bout of pneumonia while waiting for visa clearance in Australia.

Meanwhile, for the first time ever, Whitehaven have obtained sponsorship for the players’ shorts.

Two firms are sharing the role od short sponsors – FD Attire from St Bees, who are high class fashion designers and Clark Comm, water treatment specialists from Cheshire.