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"The start of any season is vital"

Harry Kewell looks ahead to Saturday's game against Port Vale at the Checkatrade Stadium

4 August 2017

Harry Kewell can’t wait for Saturday’s game against Port Vale as the Reds open their 2017-18 Sky Bet EFL Two campaign in front of the home supporters at the Checkatrade Stadium.

The game against the Valiants will be the Australian’s first competitive game in the dugout in charge of the Reds, and he’s looking forward to getting the season underway.

“I’m excited to get the games going now,” he said.

“We’ve had a good pre-season, we’ve worked the lads really hard and hopefully we can get a positive result on Saturday.

“To start the season at home is great for everyone involved with the club, the fans will be expecting a good performance and rightly so – the boys should relish that pressure.”

Michael Brown’s men suffered relegation from Sky Bet EFL One last season, and the Reds’ Head Coach emphasised that they’ll want to get off to a positive start having come down a division since last term.

“If you ask any manager or player, they’ll tell you the start of the season is vital,” he continued.

“If you can get that right then you set the tone for the year – and Port Vale will be looking to do exactly that.

“They’ll have a point to prove, and they’ve recruited well – but I’m more interested in the way we go about things on Saturday.

“I want the players to work hard and leave everything out on the pitch. That’s the one thing I’ve really tried to instil since me and Warren (Feeney) walked through the door.

“They have to want to put the work in and be a part of this club – we want to have a successful season. I’m a very ambitious person, and I want my players to be the same.”

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