Defender Dylan McGowan has assured that Adelaide United will be prepared for a tough match against well-placed La Liga side Villarreal CF.
McGowan said his team has been back in full training for a week since their season ended in Sydney, and he was impressed with the standard.
“We had an internal trial this week and that was at a high quality so I’m confident we will be fit and ready to bring a challenge to our opposition.”
McGowan personally won’t be fazed by the occasion, having played against Liverpool FC in the Europa League while he was at Hearts FC, and also featuring for the Reds when Málaga CF visited Adelaide Oval last year.
There will be many players that McGowan and his fellow defenders will have to look out for, including Giovani dos Santos up front, and explosive winger Denis Cheryshev who is on loan from Real Madrid.
However, he is adamant that the coaching staff, being mostly Spanish, would be able to fully prepare the Reds for the clash.
“Most Spanish teams play the short-passing, possession-based style of play and having Spanish coaches and players will definitely help our research and preparation for the game,” he said.
“We want to make a good account of ourselves and give our fans something to cheer about in the off-season - we won’t be underdone in terms of preparation and we’ll know what to expect when the time comes.”
Given that Villarreal CF concludes their La Liga season on Sunday, there have been suggestions that the side might “take it easy”.
But McGowan is confident they’ll take the match seriously and that it will be a fantastic occasion for all involved.
‘You don’t get to that level without being a true professional and I think they’ll definitely give us their best game,” he said.
“It’ll be great for us to test ourselves against such quality opposition and we really want to get our confidence and preparations for next season off to the best possible start.”