We’re building for the first game – Calderwood

Colin Calderwood

Colin Calderwood

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Colin Calderwood hopes Albion will come through pre-season injury free, before they start the new season at Derby on August 6.

The players returned for pre-season this week, with long-term injured duo Solly March and Uwe Hünemeier still not involved, while Beram Kayal, Connor Goldson and Jamie Murphy have not yet returned to full training.

Seagulls assistant boss Calderwood said: “The boys have come back this week and had a few tests and a reintroduction to things.

“We go away next week and hopefully by the end of that week, we’ll be seeing the benefits of pre-season training as there will be two or three sessions a day.

“We’ve got five or six weeks of pre-season but I don’t think any team is ever ready for the start of the season as you never know quite where you are but the main thing is to have everyone fit for that first game. Solly and Uwe are longer-term injuries, while Beram, Connor and Jamie haven’t quite started full training, which is a legacy of last season but that’s also down to the experience of our medical department.”

The summer training camp in Tenerife will give Albion the chance to enhance a team spirit that was evident last season and Calderwood said: “There will be 92 clubs saying their team spirit is great at the moment but we know we’ve got the basis of a good team spirit from last year.

“We’ll go away and enjoy next week and then will look forward to the first pre-season game. We won’t be the finished article for the first game but you don’t want to be either as then you’ve got nowhere to go and improve.”

Albion have three successive home games early in the season and when asked if they will give the Seagulls a chance to build momentum, Calderwood said: “You want to win home and away, which was something we did at the end of last season and is something you’ve got to do if you’re going to be successful.”

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