BRIGHOUSE Town face at least three games against Northern Counties East League new boys Basford United next season.
The sides will meet twice in the Premier Division and also in the League Cup, with the second-round tie (both are exempt until that stage) to take place at the Nottingham club’s Greenwich Avenue ground, on a date to be confirmed.
Basford, based in the Northern suburbs of Nottingham, have joined the NCEL from the East Midlands Counties League, which they won last season.
Their switch was confirmed at the NCEL annual meeting, where a controversial increase in the size of the top flight from 22 to 24 clubs was also approved.
Other new opponents for Paul Quinn’s Brighouse are Garforth Town and Hucknall Town, who have been relegated from the Northern Premier League, and Albion Sports and Athersley Recreation, promoted from the NCEL First Division.
Clubs were concerned 46 league games, on top of cup-ties, is too much, and that if there is poor weather and therefore postponements, the late-season schedule will be overcrowded.
But the expansion was still given the green light, leaving Brighouse contemplating an increase on the 50 competitive matches they played last season, when they finished runners-up to Scarborough, who were promoted to the Northern Premier League.
Brighouse have fixed up six pre-season friendlies, including plum home games against newly-promoted Conference club FC Halifax Town on Tuesday, July 9 (7.30) and a Huddersfield Town XI on Friday 12 (7.00).
The others are home to Dunston UTS on Saturday 20 (3.00), home to West Riding Select XI on Monday 22 (7.30), home to Curzon Ashton on Tuesday 30 (7.45) and away to AFC Emley on Friday, August 2 (7.30).