Badshot Lea co-manager Gavin Smith could see plenty of positives after his side started their Isthmian League South Central Division campaign with a 4-0 defeat at home to South Park on Saturday.

The match at Westfield Lane was a historic occasion for the club, as it was the first game in the Baggies’ 116-year history at Step 4 after last season’s promotion from the Combined Counties Premier Division South.

Ben Jordan opened the scoring for the visitors and Ethan Kaiser’s goal gave South Park a 2-0 lead at half-time.

Brendan Murphy-McVey scored the visitors’ third, and Ethan Ford made it 4-0 to seal the three points for South Park.

Despite the defeat, Smith saw plenty of positives for his side to take going forward.

“We created a lot of chances which we didn’t take – but we now know we can create chances at this level,” he said.

“If we weren’t creating chances I would be worried, but we know we can compete.

“The difference in levels is that mistakes get punished and you have to take your chances when you get them.

“We made some mistakes and were punished for them.

“We’ve worked hard to get promoted to this level and will continue to work hard.

“There are plenty of positives to take from the game and there is nothing to fear.

“Having said that losing 4-0 is unacceptable – our standards are better than that.

“I don’t expect to lose 4-0 to teams a level above us – we always expect to compete.

“We will be working hard in training this week and will do some finishing drills.”

Adam New has joined Combined Counties Premier Division South outfit Alton on a dual-registration, and Smith sees the move as a positive as New returns to full fitness.

“When we get Adam fully back and running and fully fit he will be an important player for us,” said Smith.

“It’s a chance for Adam to go and get some minutes at Alton, which is good for us.”

Next up for the Baggies is a home game against Lancing in the preliminary round of the FA Cup on Saturday (3pm).

“It’s a tough tie but it’s a game to look forward to and be excited by,” said Smith. “If we get through it will be worth a bit of money to the club, which is another positive.”