Watford Ladies kick off their FA Women’s Super League 2 campaign on Sunday with a trip to South London to take on Millwall Lionesses.

Keith Boanas’ team made positive strides in the Spring Series by finishing in eighth place in the table, having finished bottom in the two previous campaigns, and he will be looking for further improvement as the real thing begins this weekend.

Boanas has added several names to his squad over the summer, including former WSL 2 winners Kylie McCarthy, Laura-May Walkley, Bianca Bragg and Helen Ward.

As well as the quartet, young goalkeeper Fran Kitching has arrived on a season-long loan from Chelsea and she has been joined by Sarah Jones, formerly of Millwall, and full back Ellie Sargent.

Aside from Ward, who has just given birth to her second child, all the new signings will be available to make their debuts against Millwall this weekend.

Pre-season has been a long but successful one, with some positive results against lower league opponents, as well as some narrow defeats against top-flight sides such as Everton and Yeovil Town.

A heavy defeat and disappointing performance away to Liverpool was the only real downside to an otherwise productive schedule.

These games will all have been a good learning curve for the young squad as Boanas and his assistant Alberto Kurti implement their style of play on the team.

There has been lots going on behind the scenes and prospects are certainly looking up for the future of the club. Retaining Boanas’ services has been a key part of those improvements and a significant factor in attracting and keeping hold of players.

Sunday’s opponents Millwall also made some major improvements over the spring and having finished third behind eventual winners Everton (now a WSL 1 team) and Doncaster Belles, they will be hoping to go one better and achieve a top-two placing, having boosted their squad with the likes of England youth internationals Rhianna Dean and Charlie Devlin from Arsenal’s development squad.

Manager Lee Burch has, like his Watford counterpart, blended youth with experience. Players such as captain Ashlee Hincks, Welsh international Megan Wynne and former Reading midfielder Bonnie Horwood have all played at this level and higher for several years whereas academy products such as Ella Rutherford will give the team a youthful energy and pace.

Sunday’s game will be played at St Paul’s Sports Ground, London SE16 5EF with a 3pm kick-off. Tickets are available on the day or via the Millwall Lionesses website.