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Gateshead can go one better, says Curtis.

Byline: Steve Brown Sports Writer steve.sports-brown@ncjmedia.co.uk

JAMES Curtis says the bitter end of last season has given Gateshead the "confidence and belief " to go one better in the coming campaign.

The Tynesiders lost the Conference play-off final to Cambridge United in May.

Yet far from dwelling on the experience as a negative one, Curtis insists it is something all involved with the club ought to be proud of. They continue their pre-season preparations at Evo-Stik Premier side Grantham Town tonight.

Once the season proper kicks off at home to Torquay United on August 9, the 32-year-old defender (pictured above) believes his side can benefit from everything they encountered last term.

Curtis said: "When I look back at it now, although everyone associated with the club was disappointed and gutted after the game, I think it's something of which we should be very proud. It gives us confidence for this season. We know what we're capable of now, and we just have to do it all again this season and try and go one better.

"So it's not really a negative thing, it's a positive."

The Tynesiders have allowed 11 players to leave this summer and brought in eight so far.

Curtis added: "The belief's there now, the gaffer has installed that in us. He came in last season and said we were going to get into the play-offs at least. After the first six games I don't think anyone could believe him. Yet he has installed that belief in us. We know what we can do now, and getting to Wembley is only a positive thing for the club.

"Even though we were beaten, it's given us the confidence and the belief we want to go one better this year. He's changed the belief around the whole club." LAST NIGHT'S NON-LEAGUE FRIENDLIES: Dunston UTS 2, Whickham 1; Seaham Red Star 2, Billingham Synthonia 0; Sunderland RCA 4, Hartlepool FC 1; Tow Law Town 0, Crook Town 3; Whickham Sporting Club 1, Chester le Street 1; Wolviston 2, Cargo Fleet 1.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 30, 2014
Words:344
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