Forward Dan Udoh is happy to get back to regular football and is eager to get started in the Sky Bet League One campaign with Town’s trip to Portsmouth on Saturday.
Udoh explained that the long summer off for the squad had been incredibly tough but is looking to rediscover his flourishing form just prior to last season’s abrupt ending, in Town’s first league game back, away at Portsmouth.
On the long summer break
“Obviously it’s been hard for me with no football, but I am a family man, so It was good to be able to spend time with my family.
“It’s good to be back with the boys and being able to play football regularly again.”
On his late form last season
“I was gutted because I did pick up some good form and was hoping to continue. To then be told that we’re not allowed to play football for so long was obviously a setback.
“Now it’s a new season which means a new opportunity to get going again.”
His take on pre-season
“Pre-season for me, was exciting to get back. However, I was weary to not pick up any injuries like last year, so I don’t miss half of pre-season. I’ve been fit through all of it, so I am happy to get back and get going again.
“For me pre-season has been quite tough, and I speak for some of the boys as well. A lot of running because there’s been a change of tactics and a change of how the gaffer wants us to play.
“Comparing it to last year, the intensity is a lot higher and I think the squad has dealt with it well, the lack of injuries show this. There’s a higher workload, so overall I think pre-season has been a success for us.”
On the new arrivals settling in
“I think the new guys have settled in well. It’s good to come to a club like Shrewsbury because we’ve kept the main core of the side here. You don’t get treated like you’re new, you’re immediately treated like you’re part of the boys.
“Straight away and you can see from the game away at Middlesbrough, when Scott High scored, Rekeil Pyke scored as well, so I think these are only positive signs that is hasn’t taken long for them to fit in.”
On the Middlesbrough performance
“The team felt impressed with the performance and we know the fans were too. We felt like we played really well, we were just unlucky to concede so many on the night. We feel that if we can take those performances into the league, we will do well.”
On the return of the Sky Bet League One football
“We’re excited to get the new league season going on Saturday. The league is the most important thing every year and we all have high hopes for how we do in the league.
“We want to improve every week. I want to focus on improving, and scoring more goals is the key to that. The defenders want more clean sheets and midfielders want more assists so if we can all focus on improving as a team, then we will be able to push forward together and hopefully end higher up in the table this season.”
On Saturday’s opponents Portsmouth
“Like any other game, we will go into it and try to correctly apply ourselves. We want to impose our game on them rather then letting them do it to us.
“We go to Pompey where normally their crowd is there helping the team out, but on Saturday there are no fans, so we need to take that as an advantage for us.”