Chelsea wing-back Marcos Alonso is looking forward to seeing the amount of Blues fans in Australia, with the EPL side’s clash against Perth Glory now less than two weeks away.
Antonio Conte’s side play their first match of their pre-season against the Hyundai A-League outfit at Perth’s new Optus Stadium on Monday, July 23.
The Blues returned to pre-season training on the weekend, with Alonso one of a handful of stars to hit the pitch at the club’s Cobham base.
The Spaniard, who didn’t feature at the FIFA World Cup™, was joined by the likes of compatriots Cesc Fabregas and Pedro, Englishmen Ross Barkley and Danny Drinkwater, and Brazil international David Luiz.
They are all expected to make the trip Down Under in what will be Chelsea’s second visit to Australia in three years after they beat Sydney FC 1-0 in front of more than 83,000 fans in 2015.
While Alonso wasn’t playing for Chelsea back then, he’s excited to make the trip in what will be his first visit to Australia.
“It’s always exciting to play in new places and I hope we get to see what the city has to offer,” Alonso said on the Chelsea website.
“It’s a great opportunity for us to see our fans from the other side of the world. We feel their support throughout the year but we know they can’t always see us play.
“I have heard the stadium is really cool and maybe it won’t be as hot there as it has been in England!
“We hope to put on a good show for the fans. We have to take these games seriously.
“We have got two weeks to get ourselves into shape and prepare for it. The season starts now.”
After the Glory clash, Chelsea will also take on the likes of Arsenal and Italian side Inter Milan during their pre-season campaign.
Their first competitive match is the annual Charity Shield where they’ll take on reigning EPL champions Manchester City at Wembley on the opening weekend of August.
The match at the 60,000-seater Optus Stadium is also the first game in charge for new Glory boss Tony Popovic.
New recruits Ivan Franjic, Matthew Spiranovic, Tomislav Mrcela and Brendon Santalab could all make their debuts for the club as well.