Bruno Fornaroli says he’s never experienced a pre-season like he has with new club Perth Glory.
After signing with last season’s Premiers in March, Fornaroli is desperate to make his mark in WA after his exit from Melbourne City.
The Uruguayan striker is a few weeks into training with his new teammates under Tony Popovic ahead of the club's pre-season clash against Manchester United on July 13.
And while pre-season training can be a tough, arduous grind in its early stages - particularly under a hard taskmaster like Popovic - Fornaroli says he’s loving the experience and has been blown away by the work ethic of his Glory teammates.
“The way they are training is unbelievable, like I have never seen before,” Fornaroli told Perth Glory’s official website.
“This is why I say I enjoy it because when I see my teammates training like that, it’s incredible.”
The 31-year-old added: “There's a tough couple of weeks coming but we need to trust the boss and the staff and the way [Glory] played last season starts here in pre-season.
“If I want to be a part of it then I have to train hard.”
Gallifuoco drawing on Tottenham memories to spark Mariners
He may be just 25 years of age and played 10 matches in total in the Hyundai A-League, but Giancarlo Gallifuoco plans to take a leading role at Central Coast Mariners.
Gallifuoco is one of six new faces signed so far by Mariners boss Alen Stajcic as they look to work their way back up the Hyundai A-League ladder in 2019/20.
For the versatile Gallifuoco – who can play both in defence and midfield – a fresh start in Gosford feels like the chance to make a stamp not only on his new club, but also his career.
The Sydney-born footballer was just 17 when he was signed by Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur, where he spent two years playing with the club’s youth side.
“To train in the first team [at Tottenham] with players of those calibres... that are just ridiculous and out of this world, I am very grateful. You learn to be professional around these top players and really hope I can teach the younger boys what I’ve learnt,” Gallifuoco said.
“The first day at Tottenham my gym partner was Emmanuel Adebayor. Every single day I had to do prehab and with him I learned the psyche and mentality of always wanting to win, always believing you could score.
“From that I started to grow and teach myself to be more like these players so I could implement that into my own game.”
Asked about his hopes of rebuilding the Mariners, Gallifuoco said: “People are forgetting how powerful the club was before the recent years and I want to bring it back to that."
“It’s a family run club with a beautiful fan base and we all want to bring it back to the powerhouse days and I think we have the team to do it.”
Fitzgerald lured by Merrick's style
He’s played under some of the most successful coaches in the Hyundai A-League but it was Ernie Merrick’s football philosophy which drew Nick Fitzgerald to the Newcastle Jets.
Fitzgerald will play for the Hunter club in the 2019/20 Season after he was released by Western Sydney Wanderers at the end of the last campaign.
The 27-year-old has amassed more than 170 games in the Hyundai A-League for Central Coast Mariners, Brisbane Roar, Melbourne City and the Wanderers, coached by the likes of Ange Postecoglou and Graham Arnold in that time.
Looking to re-establish himself after a difficult 2018/19 Season in which he made just three starts, Fitzgerald is confident he can return to his best under Merrick’s tutelage.
“The football team and the style of play that Ernie likes to play was attractive to me and Ernie was happy to bring me in, he thought I’d suit the style of play so that was a driving factor,” Fitzgerald said on the Jets’ official website.
“I’ve been keeping a close eye on Newcastle and the way they play the last couple of years.
“I think they’ve been fantastic, really entertaining to watch and it’s just about trying to get that style of play and the results with it as well.
“It’s also a great place to live, fantastic for my family, so those two factors were the strongest for me to come to Newcastle.”