BRADFORD (Park Avenue) manager Mark Bower is hopeful that a couple of new signings can fire his side back up the table, after they dropped to rock-bottom following last Saturday's horror show at Kettering Town.

Avenue face a tricky task at home to King's Lynn Town tomorrow, with the free-scoring newly-promoted side sitting in second. But Bower says his side have shown what they can do in recent clashes with other Vanarama National League North high-fliers.

They beat Hereford 3-2 on October 12 and were harshly done by in the 3-0 defeat to Southport a fortnight ago.

With veteran striker Oli Johnson back in the fold and defensive midfielder Jonathan Royle joining on loan from AFC Telford United, Bower is hopeful the pair can solve some problems.

He said: "Oli's just a good player. I think two years ago he scored 19 for us from the left wing. He's struggled with a knee injury (in the last year or so) so it will be a gradual introduction, as he lacks match sharpness.

"But he's looked good in training and we'll maybe look to try and step up his workload and give him more minutes this weekend, as a fit and firing Oli Johnson will be massive for us.

"Jonathan's got good experience in this league and we've been trying to strengthen in that area for a while. He's young, he's got quality, he's got good energy and a great range of passing.

"He'll be a really positive addition for us us over the next two months."

Royle could be thrown straight into action for the league clash against King's Lynn, with Bower quick to praise tomorrow's opponents, saying they had hallmarks of his own team from last season.

He said: "King's Lynn have shown what can be achieved with a steady and settled squad that has a bit of momentum behind them.

"It's similar to us last year, and they're punching well above their weight too. It will be a tough game, especially with their strike partnership, who score a lot of goals.

"There was a lot pressure on us last week but maybe not so much here, so we've just got to react well and give a good performance.

"In the two home games we've had against promotion challengers we've pretty much matched Hereford and Southport.

"We've got to be at it again here. We'll know as much as we can about King's Lynn and exploit any weaknesses, any advantage we can get to give us something to get a result."

Avenue were certainly not at it at fellow strugglers Kettering. Bower moaned that there were "no positives to take out of the game" and that his team "got what we deserved" in the 4-0 loss.

Fortunately, there were clear signs of improvement in Monday's 2-1 West Riding County Cup defeat at Harrogate Town, with Bower saying that it was a "good exercise" for his squad, and that they "played some good stuff against a strong team".

He also complained that a dubious refereeing decision cost them against Harrogate, and that they'd had at least one of those in every game since his return.

Hopefully, against King's Lynn, that unwelcome streak will come to an end.