The Army have suffered a setback in their preparations to defend their Inter-Services trophy, losing 4-0 at home to the Prison Service.
The Army were missing several players from last season’s Inter-Services title-winning squad and conceded after just a quarter of an hour.
Alex Johnson lashed home the opening goal following Gary Knight's surging run.
Johnson again put the Army under pressure.
The Ashton United frontman unlocked the Reds defence getting his shot away but was denied by Mike Davies in the Army goal.
The Prison Service were dominating possession with Tom Wilkes firing past Davies from range for a 2-0 lead.
The Prison Service continued to turn the screw and added a third goal just before the break.
Dean Evans determined run finished with Johnson sliding in for his second goal and a 3-0 advantage.
They wrapped up the win shortly after the interval as Mitchel Gough fired home a fourth to cap a convincing victory.
“I think I’ve got a very good squad – it was unfortunate that UKAF played in the same week as us which put us on the backfoot.
“But there’s no doubt that the pressure will come and I expected that when I took the job.”
Looking ahead to their next match against the German side, Captain Birchnall said: “The Germans are technically very good, we obviously lost last year out in Germany.
“The occasion will be really good. I think we’re looking at between 5,000 and 10,000 already sold for each fixture because the females are playing the same day.”
The side face the German forces in the Remembrance fixture in November.