We have spent the last couple of weeks catching up with managers around the country to get their thoughts and feelings on three topics ahead of the new season; their pre-season campaigns, their expectations, and the teams they are tipping for the top.

A selection of npower League 1 bosses tell us who they are tipping for the top this season:

Gary Smith (Stevenage)
"There will be plenty of sides looking for successes this year, there's one or two that have added good players and have good financial backing. I know the teams that have come down have one or two issues, like Portsmouth who have already found themselves in some difficulty.

"There's some big clubs with lots of expectations so there will be plenty fighting not just for promotion but for the Play-Off spots as well."

Graham Westley (Preston North End)
"I think it's going to be difficult for a lot of clubs this year because of the squad budgeting regulations.

"I think you have seen with the limited movement in the market place, clubs are having to clear down their squads and re-shuffle things to make sure they comply with the new requirements. So, that's going to be a big factor in the way the league is going to shape up.

"Some clubs are going to be a little bit more constrained compared to what they have been in the past and some of the big clubs are going to be under a lot of pressure because of it. It's a difficult time in football, and in the world in general, and those financial constraints are a burden. That said, we always see every year, unexpected clubs making a challenge at the top end. There's normally the big and expected clubs up there and it's always competitive from one to 24 in any of the Football League's and anyone can beat anyone."

Russell Slade (Leyton Orient)
"It's a difficult one. What I will say is I feel as if it's more open than what it has been for the last few seasons. One or two of the clubs that have come down have their own problems so they will have to adjust to the nature of League 1 and acclimatise. Hopefully, while they are doing that, we're getting a bit of a leap on them.

"It will remain a very competitive league, it always is, and top can be beat bottom but certainly bottom can beat top - it's always been like that in League 1."

Andy Thorn (Coventry City)
"There's a number of teams in there who can mount a challenge, it's important that you focus on yourselves whilst having respect for the other sides in the league.

Paolo Di Canio (Swindon Town)
"We are going to be playing against Sheffield United, who have shown in the last few years they don't finish outside the top six. Elsewhere, in some way you can expect, even if they have a problem, Portsmouth because it's a big club. Coventry because they were relegated but once again it's not easy but for sure Sheffield United. But, we hope we can stay close to them."

Paul Dickov (Oldham Athletic)
"I think it's going to be a lot tighter than it has been the last couple of years. There's a lot of good teams and a lot of good teams that try and play football, I don't think we will necessarily see what Charlton did last year, Southampton and Brighton the year before that ran away with it. It think it's going to be a lot closer all the way through."

Steve Davis (Crewe Alexandra)
"Well it'll be the same sort of teams - MK Dons, Notts County, Sheffield United, the bigger clubs, the clubs that have been in this league trying to get out for a bit of time now and they'll be one or two surprises no doubt. It looks a very competitive league, League 2 was difficult to separate at the start of last season and the teams you expected to be up there weren't so you don't know; it's difficult to make that assessment really.

Uwe Rosler (Brentford)
"In my opinion around 10/12 clubs are fighting for Play-Off positions and we are one of them.