Grant McCann was delighted to see an improvement in his Doncaster Rovers side as they put his plans into practice against Birmingham City.
Rovers were unfortunate to lose 1-0 against a full strength Blues outfit at Solihull Moors on Friday.
And McCann felt there had been progression as his side stepped up their preparations for the new campaign against the team from the Championship.
"It's important we keep getting in the messages we want to deliver to the boys," he said.
"You can see some of the movement, the passing, the link play, it was getting better from the first two games.
"It's starting to come. It's going to take time.
"When you put a new formation onto them, a new manager, a new way of playing, new staff, it's going to take a group a bit of time to adjust to it.
"I can see they're getting there and we're still two weeks away from the first game."
Fitness levels remain a priority for the Rovers boss, who was pleased to see the majority of the team he fielded able to play 90 minutes against strong opposition.
"I was really impressed with the group, their fitness levels, their play," he said.
"We were playing against probably Birmingham's strongest team and we had a lot of young lads in the team.
"You only have to look at the players we've left behind.
"Taking that into account I thought it was a tremendous workout for our boys and every one of them comes out with credit."
"Defensively the back four stood strong and the midfield three were working hard. And ,like I touch on all the time, the front three were picking up good positions to break quickly.
"I was pleased with the all round game.
"It was disappointing to concede so late because they worked so hard."
READ MORE: Birmingham 1 Rovers 0