Derry City manager Declan Devine has warned that the club's new signings will require time to 'gel' with their new team-mates.
Devine has added a number of new faces to the Foylesiders' squad, including winger Paddy Kavanagh and forward Michael Rafter, and the Candystripes boss is nearing the completion of a deal to bring former Dundalk striker Marc Griffin to the club.
Several players have departed the Brandywell ahead of the 2013 season, with Stephen McLaughlin joining English Championship side Nottingham Forest and David McDaid signing a deal with York City. Strikers Mark Farren and Conor Murphy have also opted to leave the club, joining Glenavon and St Patrick's Athletic respectively.
Nevertheless, the Candystripes boss is confident that his new signings can fill the void. However, he stressed that the players would need time to settle in to life at the Brandywell.
"I believe we've lost quality players in Stephen McLaughlin and in David McDaid and with them goes 34 goals from last season," Devine told the Derry Journal. "But I believe we have added good quality and depth to the our squad for 2013."
He continued: "Rory Patterson has been outstanding in pre-season training and practise matches and I think he will prove to be a massive player for us. If he keeps injury free, I'd be very confident that he will be in amongst the goals in 2013.
"We'll not be setting any targets, but he will be well supported by other players who will complement his game," added Devine.
"Players such as Michael Rafter, Paddy Kavanagh and, hopefully, Marc Griffin will prove to be beneficial to Patterson and Thomas Crawley could also prove to be a valuable asset.
"However, as is the case with all new players, they will require time to bed in and I'm sure our supporters will be the first to realise that as individuals such as Niall McGinn, James McClean and Stephen McLaughlin also needed time to gel," said the Derry boss.