Chorley boss Jamie Vermiglio says people should write off his skipper Andrew Teague at their peril.
Vermiglio says the long-serving defender has more than proved he belongs in the National League after the Magpies were promoted at the end of last season.
A broken leg at Macclesfield in 2006 cut short Teague’s Football League career and, after a spell at Lancaster City, Garry Flitcroft brought the centre-half to Victory Park in 2011.
Three promotions later the Magpies are in the top tier of non-league. And after helping his side to back-to-back goalless draws against Bromley and AFC Fylde, Vermiglio says it is a shame that Teague, 33, has not had the chance to prove himself at this level before.
Ahead of Saturday’s trip to Sutton, he said: “Andy has been formidable in the last couple of games.
“I think it is fair to say that he has been playing below his level since his bad injury.
“Teaguey is a National League player at the very least and it is just a shame that he has got there at this point in his career.
“He has been great for the lads to have someone like him leading from the back.
“Andy has been so consistent, he’s fit, he’s looking after himself outside the game and we are lucky to have a fantastic character and person like him captaining our side.
“People have written him off at different stages and some people might have started to do so this season.
“But he has more than made the step up and I’m delighted with what I have seen so far.
“It is only two games in but the way he applies himself on and off the pitch he is a proper captain. He is a big part of our football club and he will continue to do that this year.”
Defender Courtney Meppen-Walter recovered from the injury he sustained in pre-season to make his first start at Fylde.
He made way for Mark Ross in the second half and, with Scott Leather a doubt for Saturday, Vermiglio sees plenty of positives.
He said: “It was great to have Courtney back because when he went down in pre-season I was expecting the worst.
“So to get him back for the second game was great.
“I had a decision to put him or Mark Ross in. Mark has come in and done fantastically in pre-season but it was just an opportunity to get Mepps some minutes.”
Elsewhere, in the National League, AFC Fylde welcome Ebbsfleet United to Mill Farm.
In the National League North, Southport host Guiseley.
Burscough travel to AFC Liverpool in the FA Cup extra preliminary round, where Clitheroe are at home to 1874 Northwich.
Bamber Bridge are in friendly action, making the trip to Tadcaster Albion.
Garstang are without a game this weekend.