Daws raring to go
Michael Dawson expects a tough curtain-raiser as we travel to Stevenage for our first pre-season friendly of 2012-13 this evening.
We kick-off against the League One side at 7.45pm at the Lamex Stadium.
Michael has painful memories of our last meeting against Stevenage in the fifth round of the FA Cup last season.
The initial tie was a bruising goalless draw at the Lamex and then disaster struck in the replay at the Lane in March as the central defender landed awkwardly and picked up an ankle injury that ended his season early.
He has worked tireless since then to regain fitness and can’t wait to get started again.
“I missed so many matches last season and I was watching the Euros thinking ‘I can’t wait to get back for pre-season’ - that’s not something I’ve said very often!” said ‘Daws’.
“Pre-season is such a tough time, but I couldn’t wait to get back, get started and hopefully have a good season.”
Stevenage provided a stern physical test at the Lamex and Michael expects much of the same.
“Going to places like Stevenage will always be tough,” he added.
“In the FA Cup last season it was one of those days – sunny, windy, the pitch was bobbly and we had to go there and dig in.
“We got a 0-0 draw, brought them back to White Hart Lane and got the win.
“Unfortunately, from a personal point of view, the replay was a disaster for me.
“But that’s all gone now. It’s a season I want to forget because of my injuries and then what happened to the team, missing out on the Champions League.
“That’s gone, we move forward and look ahead to the first Premier League game of the season at Newcastle. That’s what we’re all working towards.
“We’ve been back (in training) just over a week now, the hard work has been done and we now look forward to the first game at Stevenage.”