Date: 5th July 2017 at 8:08pm
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With promotion being Aston Villa’s only aim in 2017/18, assistant manager Colin Calderwood has promised the hard work has already begun out in Portugal and the players can certainly expect more.

Having headed out on Sunday for a week long training camp in Portugal, Calderwood told the Official Site that it had been full steam ahead since the return to training as we want to be in the best possible shape going into the campaign.

‘It was good to see the lads back. They know that the hard work starts here. It`s our job to get the players in peak physical condition for this season, which is clearly a big one for the club. In today`s football world, you can`t give an inch when it comes to fitness – these boys must be ready for the big kick-off.’

With plenty of talk about fitness last season and manager Steve Bruce making a number of comments quite specifically and also in general about the group, Calderwood went on to say that not having the players in peak condition last year, well that wasn’t going to happen again.

‘When the gaffer arrived, he said quite clearly that he felt the fitness of the players wasn`t where it should be so clearly we now have the opportunity to make our mark on them in the next few weeks. There`s a real determination in the coaching team to ensure this is a successful season. We came in a few months into the previous season and the final league position wasn`t what we had hoped for. But we`re here from the start this time and we`re ready.’

The former Brighton assistant went on to say of Bruce himself, that it’s about getting the fitness right and laying the foundations for the coming year ahead in terms of tactics and what the management staff want from them.

‘The gaffer has had promotions aplenty throughout his career and I know he`s single-minded in his determination this season. We`re all desperate to help him achieve that. You lay the foundations in pre-season and that`s what we`ll be looking to do now.’

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