JOHN Sussex believes Basildon United's 5-0 pre-season friendly win over St Margaretsbury showcased how far the Bees have come since he took charge.

Ayo Odukoya bagged a brace of goals, while Joe Paxman, Ernest Okah and Harry Doyle were also on target in the convincing victory over the Essex Senior League outfit.

And Sussex felt plenty of positives came from the contest.

"I was very happy with the performance and result," said Sussex, who succeeded Neil Blackburn as boss in March.

"I noticed huge improvements from where we were last season.

"But I'm not going to get carried away because it's still early in pre-season.

"We played a totally different team to the one that started for us in midweek and that shows we have pretty good strength in depth, which is really pleasing.

"I'm cautiously optimistic heading into the new season."

The Bees had a three-goal advantage at the break thanks to Odukoya's double and Paxman adding his name to the scoresheet.

Okah and Doyle found the back of the net after the interval to round off the scoring at Woodlands School.

And Sussex was pleased to see his side grow in confidence in front of goal.

"I had Ayo with me at the Tilbury under-23s and also took him to Witham Town last season, so I know what he is all about," added Sussex.

"He is still only 20 and Ayo is a good talent.

"Joe is someone I rate highly and it was great for Ernest and Harry to also score as we continue our preparations."