Alonso pleased with pre-season so far


Ahead of today’s visit of English Championship side Blackburn Rovers, Fran Alonso shared his positivity at the start to pre-season so far having picked up three wins in three games.

Following their away victory to Sunderland, Alonso is looking for more of the same today, as the return of the domestic game and Champions League football edges closer and closer.

He began: “I was very pleased. The first two games we were obviously rusty, but that’s normal. We didn’t do much tactical work because it’s about volume but I’m very pleased with the Sunderland performance and the result. The quality of training today has been very high so I’m expecting a good game against Blackburn.

“We’re still waiting for two or three players to arrive which will obviously help the team and have some coming back from injury so we’re right where we want to be at this stage.”

After such a crammed finale to a stressful season on and off the pitch and a shorter break than usual, Alonso knows his players haven’t had the proper time to recover and decompress, but praised them for their hard work in the baking sun.

He said: “We haven’t been able to fly out of the country to rest, relax and try to forget about football. 

“Nobody has really been able to switch off like in a normal season because obviously with the amount of fixtures we had and finishing very late, but this is what we love doing. We love training and competing, but I agree that the psychological load of lats season was huge because of the amount of fixtures and what was at stake.

“To go those 13 games unbeaten required a lot of psychological input but the girls are happy. The weather has made the sessions tough but it is also helping.”

Celtic host Blackburn today in a meeting the manager believes will be a tricky test against a side he knows well from his time in the English Championship.

“I know them well. I played them a few times and they were always the best team in tier three, and they finally a couple of years ago gained promotion to the Championship and have been growing and growing. They did very well last year until the end when they picked up a few defeats, so we’re expecting a tough game but hopefully a good one for us,” he said.

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