Lancashire head coach Glen Chapple admits his side are among the favourites to win the County Championship this season.
The Red Rose are looking to build on second in Division One last summer but stumbled out of the blocks with defeat to Nottinghamshire at Old Trafford in their 2018 opener.
Next up is a trip to Chelmsford to face reigning champions Essex with the four-day game getting under way on Friday.
“All the team now have got pedigree where as perhaps in the last few years we’ve lacked that,” said Chapple.
“We’ve always known that we’ve got talented cricketers but now we’ve got a season under our belts of challenging.
“In those terms I think people will expect us to be there or thereabouts.
“Having said that, everyone that knows Division One knows that it’s a difficult and unpredictable division.
“We’ve got to be aware of that and we’ve got to realise just assuming you’ve got a skilful squad is nowhere near enough.
“We’ve got to be much better than that.
“We’ve got to work together as a team, we’ve got to work very hard and in a disciplined fashion to achieve our goals.
“The first five games come thick and fast and at the end of that period we need to be in a good position.”
Bouncing back will require Lancashire to improve on their away form in 2017 which saw them go winless on the road in Division One.
“It’s something we’re looking at but it hasn’t been a long-standing issue,” said Chapple.
“If anything, a couple of the years ago people were asking us the opposite question.
“We could have done with winning three or four games away last year and we would have been right up there.
“There were some pitches were a draw was the favoured result and then two towards the end were very sporting pitches and we just came out on the wrong side of both games.”