Club partners San Jose Earthquakes have been training at Spurs Lodge for the past week in preparation for the up-coming MLS season.
It is the third year of our partnership with the Californians, who are one of the emerging franchises Stateside after their most successful campaign to date last year.
The Quakes reached the MLS Play-Offs for the first time in their short history, making it all the way to the semi-finals before defeat to Colorado Rapids.
During their training camp here, they have played three friendly matches – defeating reserve sides from Birmingham City and Colchester United before losing out to Leicester City.
It’s been a year on since the Quakes’ last visit to these shores, and coach Frank Yallop hopes this latest trip will have a similarly positive impact on their season proper as it did 12 months ago.
He said: “We had a good season last year and I think it started off with the training camp we had here. We picked up some good habits, the players really enjoyed it, and we carried it on into the season.
“As a result, the players were looking forward to this year’s trip and being in the Spurs environment where there’s stuff always going on.
“It’s good especially for our younger players to realise that soccer is a big deal over here and the rest of the world, and they can see what we’re trying to follow is a club like Spurs.”
On the success of last season and aspirations for the coming campaign, Frank continued: “It was our third year and it’s never easy to get success quickly. I thought it would take maybe another year, but we had a great base of players from the previous year.
“We had a good mix of experience and youngsters, a great team spirit, and we’ve kept the core for the coming season.
“I hope we didn’t over-achieve last year but every team is trying to make the Play-Offs because once you get in there, anything can happen.
“The top teams always make it, but we made it for the first time in three years, so it’s our aim to do it again this year.
“We look a good team, comfortable on the ball with purpose, and we feel like we can play against anybody with no fear.”
The Quakes’ MLS season kicks off at home to Real Salt Lake on Saturday March 19. We wish them well.