WOMEN'S WEEKLY

With pre-season training underway, and a host of new signings to welcome into the squad, the official Chelsea website caught up with Ladies' assistant manager Paul Green to find out about their preparation for the forthcoming season in greater detail…

Back in training
The Chelsea Ladies reported for pre-season duty on Sunday at Cobham, following six weeks off after the trip to Japan in early December. Green explained what he and manager Emma Hayes will be hoping to achieve before the season starts again in mid-April.

'The model that Emma follows is periodisation, which is a gradual build of fitness rather than running them into the ground,' said Green.

'They will be working hard but it'll all be with football specific drills. It won't be long-distance running or anything like that; they'll get their fitness out of working with the ball.

'It's a similar process to the one Jose and Rui (Faria) use for the men's team. We make sure there is a lot of injury prevention work going into the training so we've got a fit, fresh, healthy squad that won't peak too soon or burn themselves out. We're looking to peak going into our first competitive game so pre-season is all about gradually building up our fitness.'

Strengthening of squad
The club secured the services of Ji So-Yun, a 22-year-old attacking midfielder who shone against Chelsea for INAC Kobe Leonessa in the final of the Club World Cup in Japan. The three-time Korean Footballer of the Year joins on a two-year deal, joining the England quartet of Rachel Williams, Laura Bassett, Gilly Flaherty and Katie Chapman as the club's new signings.

'Ji So-Yun was introduced to the group for the first time on Tuesday. She didn't train because she had just flown in from South Korea, but she'll be having her first training session today (Thursday). She'll take a little bit of time to adapt to the group but I'm sure she'll be a big success as she's such an outstanding player.

'Myself and Emma feel as though we've strengthened substantially with the players we've brought in. Everything is looking really positive moving forward and the squad are all looking forward to the upcoming season.'

The fixtures for the forthcoming FA Women's Super League season are due to be announced imminently, with the first round of matches due to be played on April 17.