Friendlies are all well and good. But there’s nothing quite like the ups and downs of that 90-minute battle for three points in the Championship. New arrival Michael Morrison can’t want to go to battle when it all starts again this weekend against Sheffield Wednesday.
“I’ve enjoyed being back in with a group and training – the lads look ready to go, and I’m excited for the new season,” he said.
“In pre-season, you’re away for a while and then back to training for a bit, but you just want to get the real stuff going. It was nice to play Chelsea last week and put in a good performance, so you just want to get going now.
“The lads have been really easy to get on with. It is quite a young group so there isn’t too much banter coming the way of the old lads!
“We all want to get forward and play some nice football and the lads have shown that. My job at the back will be to make sure that we’re organised when we’ve got the ball and when we haven’t, and that we don’t get countered on.
“It’s a long season and you can get carried away if things aren’t going so well, or if they are going well. So I’ll try to be a steady head and keep everyone on the right path and doing the right things, staying professional no matter what’s happening.
“There’s competition for places so you don’t know whether you need to bide your time – I’ll do whatever I can on the training pitch to be ready whenever it’s my turn.”
The Owls arrive manager-less – Lee Bullen is the caretaker after Steve Bruce’s departure.
But Morrison knows that the visitors to Madejski Stadium won’t be a soft touch, despite their off-field issues.
“Wednesday are a very good side,” he continued. “They are very aggressive, very direct at points. They have Steven Fletcher as a target man and some good quality off of him.
“Their manager leaving won’t make too much of a difference as they’ve been together quite a while. I’d expect them to do well this season and I think they could go under the radar after a tough summer, from the outside looking in. I’m sure in their camp they’ll have a siege mentality and be ready to go.
“They’re a team that many might underestimate. They’ll surprise a few people as they have a lot of talent there. They are sure of their gameplan and their strengths.”