Fresh from a two-year spell abroad, Craig Goodwin, says he is thrilled to be back plying his trade with Adelaide United.
The 26-year-old returned to his hometown Club last month on a three-year contract, after spending the past two seasons in the Netherlands with Eredivisie side Sparta Rotterdam.
Pre-season training got underway on Monday and Goodwin revealed his excitement about the season ahead.
“Obviously really excited to get back into and be in the group with the boys and start the hard work for the coming season,” the winger said.
Although training officially commenced at the start of the week, the players were still busy maintaining their fitness levels over the break.
Goodwin was no exception.
“I think the work I’ve done in the off-season has helped me prepare,” he said.
“There’s a lot of running obviously involved with pre-season and the sessions are quite long too.
“So we’ve been doing a lot of double sessions, so it’s all the ground work that we need for the coming season to be as fit as possible and put the foundations in for a good season.”
After spending time in Europe, Goodwin believes the quality in the Hyundai A-League is only improving each year.
Goodwin claimed the Aurelio Vidmar Club Champion Award in 2016, before departing for Sparta where he netted six goals and registered six assists in the Dutch top-flight.
“Obviously I’ve learned a lot from my time overseas and you can see that the level here in Australia is getting better and better,” Goodwin explained.
“We’ve got a lot of young players here so there’s a job for me and the older players to do is to help them grow but it’s definitely a good level.”
The Reds’ first competitive match of the 2018/19 campaign will see them host Central Coast Mariners in the Round of 32 of the FFA Cup.
Goodwin was eagerly awaiting the tie and stated Adelaide are determined to win the tournament for a second time.
“Very excited, obviously the cup competition really shortens the pre-season a bit because it’s very long,” he continued.
“So it’s very exciting to get into the FFA Cup and hopefully have a good run there and try and win the competition.”