It is now just over two weeks until the Blues are back in match action, and Marcos Alonso is already looking forward to our pre-season opener in Perth.
The wing-back has enjoyed a well-earned rest over the past few weeks having featured so regularly last season. When we spoke to the Spaniard before the FA Cup final back in May, he signalled his determination to lift silverware at the end of his second season in west London. That was exactly how it panned out as we defeated Manchester United at Wembley.
‘Now we want to get back to the top level in the league after a not very good year, and pre-season is an important stage of that,’ he says.
Alongside the running and gym work that this time of the year is best known for, pre-season matches also provide critical preparation for when the competitive action gets underway again.
First stop for the Blues is the west coast of Australia, where we will play Perth Glory at the impressive Optus Stadium on Monday 23 July. Brand new this year, and with a capacity of 60,000, it is not just the stadium that will be unchartered territory for Alonso. He reveals he has never been to Australia before.
‘It’s always exciting to play in new places and I hope we get to see what the city has to offer,’ he smiles.
‘It’s a great opportunity for us to see our fans from the other side of the world. We feel their support throughout the year but we know they can’t always see us play.
‘I have heard the stadium is really cool and maybe it won’t be as hot there as it has been in England! We hope to put on a good show for the fans. We have to take these games seriously.
‘We have got two weeks to get ourselves into shape and prepare for it. The season starts now.’