Two assists for winger Sone Aluko helped the Royals seal a fine comeback against Beşiktaş earlier this week and the winger is confident the team are getting fitter and fitter as the pre-season stay in Austria goes on.
"We had a good game against Beşiktaş on Tuesday - tough opposition and a team with a lot of top class, experienced players. So it was a good test for us," he said.
"They kept the ball well and it was a good result in the end to get a draw; we showed good resilience to come back from two goals down.
"It was a good work out for us, to work on our defending, our shape, we counter attacked pretty well in the game – and then getting those two goals late on was great."
Before supplying the cross for Marc McNulty's winner, Aluko made Sam Smith's goal by chasing what seemed a hopeless cause in closing down the Turkish top tier side's stopper.
"They played it back towards the goalkeeper and he had to come wide of his area a bit, so I thought... it’s pre-season... I’ll get my running metres up and chase it down.
"I wasn't really hoping to get anything from it and then, as I got closer, I thought - 'I could get this’ - and I got the block in! Thankfully it fell straight to Sam and he took his time! But he put it away nicely...very composed finish."
Pre-season is nothing new to an experienced individual like Aluko. And although it's always hard work, it is also an enjoyable part of every campaign.
"It’s been tough, as you'd expect. Running is a given in pre-season as you aim to get the fitness levels up, so it’s always tough. But you have to find a way to enjoy it because you know it’s coming anyway. And it’s not my first pre-season, so I’m used to it.
"We know each other well from last year, but there are a few new boys – it’s good for them to get in amongst the team and for the manager to get to know the players well.
"It’s the first time he’s had a full week with us together, without us going home in between. So it’s been a good chance to bond – just like any pre-season, there have been some tough bits and some enjoyable bits.
"The training facilities are good here which is good as we train twice a day a bit here, then we have a couple of matches back to back, so you soon get to know how everyone else plays.
"And the new lads learn about us, how the team plays, how the manager wants the team to set up, going forward and defensively.
"We have meetings and discussions about how we're playing too and it’s intense... like a crash course in how the manager wants us to play. From day one he was very clear on how he wants us to play and now it’s coming together.
"It’s a process whenever a new manager comes in and it takes a bit of time. But we’ve worked a lot on it in pre-season and we’ll be ready for the start of the season in a good game against Derby County."
It also seems that no matter how much the pre-season running might hurt, a narrow loss in the squad quiz night also stings!
"We got robbed!" he smiled. "You shouldn’t have your phone on in a quiz, but Vito found a way to get a phone in there – and my team lost by half a point! So we weren’t too happy about that!"