BRIGHTLINGSEA Regent manager Tom Rothery has challenged his attacking players to "sprinkle some gold dust" as they look to build on the positives of Saturday's encouraging draw against Margate.

The R's began their BetVictor Isthmian League premier division campaign with a hard-earned clean sheet at Hartsdown Park and will now be looking to turn one point into three when they welcome Bowers and Pitsea to the Taydal Stadium tonight (kick-off 7.45pm).

Rothery hopes his side can build on the positives, in their opening home game of the new campaign.

However, he admits his team also need to show a bit more spark and creativity in the final third.

"We showed last season that we can win games and be competitive at this level," he said.

"Now we've got to do it again and I genuinely believe we've got a squad capable of improving on last year.

"As a squad, we're stronger this time around and there's no debate about that.

"We've got a great bunch of boys and they all want to learn, develop and improve.

"They get what we're trying to do.

"We need someone to show a bit more creativity and belief, to sprinkle a bit of gold dust.

"Aaron Condon is a massive loss from last season because he was a phenomenal attacking player.

"We were always going to miss him but I still believe we've got goals in this team - we just need to click and spark in that department.

"When that happens, I'm hopeful we won't look back because that's all we're lacking."

Aside from their cutting edge, Rothery was delighted with his side's performance on the Kent coast.

He felt it was a solid platform to build on and was particularly impressed with new goalkeeper Charlie Turner.

"Grabbing a winner would have made it a perfect day, but starting with such a solid performance and keeping a clean sheet wasn't far short," he said.

"We were solid, organised and disciplined and our workrate was where I felt it should be.

"Charlie, in particular, deserves a mention because he had an excellent debut.

"He was solid and commanding, despite the windy conditions, and made a couple of good saves.

"His distribution was outstanding and his performance was a massive positive.

"The back four and midfield were also excellent but we just lacked a little bit of spark in the final third."

There are four other fixtures of note tonight.

After three straight defeats, BRAINTREE TOWN will hope to kick-start their season when they travel to St Albans City in Vanarama National League South.

In Thurlow Nunn League first division south, HALSTEAD TOWN entertain LITTLE OAKLEY while REGENT'S RESERVES travel to Burnham Ramblers.

Meanwhile, in the Essex Senior Cup, COGGESHALL UNITED have a home date with HARWICH AND PARKESTON.