After six weeks of pre-season training and completing a five-game friendly schedule unbeaten, the real thing starts at Upton Park at 3pm on Saturday.
Mauricio and his coaching staff have been delighted with the squad’s work over the summer and our new Head Coach is ready for the big kick-off.
“It’s great to have the start of the season,” said Mauricio. “We’ve worked hard pre-season and we are ready to compete. We enjoy the competition.
“We expect a tough game, it’s a derby and we go there to play with our skill and try to win the game.”
Meanwhile, Mauricio was quick to play down suggestions that we are looking to move on a number of players in the squad.
He added: “I've been made aware of some reports claiming we are looking to sell half of our squad. Not only is this crazy for anyone to suggest but also particularly unhelpful to us just two days before the start of our season. We are fortunate to have a squad full of quality, as I have said on numerous occasions, and we are not expecting to see much movement before the end of the transfer window. We will loan out some of our younger players to help further their development. Several of our players are under 21 so we don’t envisage a problem meeting the Premier League’s squad limit of 25.”