Sydney FC’s new Head Coach Graham Arnold has laid down his expectations for the season ahead after taking the Sky Blues for their first pre-season training session of the year.
Arnold said the first session was all about clearing out the cobwebs after the players had a six week layoff and the Championship winner said he wanted to push the players as far as they can go this 2014/15 Hyundai A-League season.
“First day at a new club for me, it’s exciting to be here,” Arnold said.
“It’s good to get the players back in there, they’ve had 6 weeks off, and we’re getting them started again and I’m getting to know them.
“I had a chat to the boys and a presentation before training about what my expectations are and what I want to achieve this season here and it went across well,” he continued.
“My expectations are for success. I’ve got high standards and I demand high standards so success means ACL [Asian Champions League].
“If the standards that you set are mediocre then you’ll only get mediocrity. I want to push these boys as far as they can and maximise what we can get out of this playing group.”
With a long offseason ahead, Arnold revealed how he would handle the pre-season schedule and he said the first part would be all about getting the team closer to each other through team bonding sessions.
“I think one thing unique about the A-League is the long offseason,” said Arnold.
“We’ll break it up into three blocks and fortunately for the first of these blocks we have something to aim for and that’s the game against Newcastle United in Dunedin and West Ham in Wellington.
“Then we’ll taper off after that for a few weeks to freshen up the players again before we go into a seven or eight week preseason for the competition.
“It’s a long time, the first part will be a lot of team building and bonding and we start that on Thursday with a bit of paintball shooting.
“Getting the boys close together and mateship is important to me.”
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