With just under three weeks to go until the new Premier League season kicks off against Burnley on 10 August, Saints’ Danny Ings is confident that he is right where he needs to be in terms and fitness and mental preparation.
His debut season yielded eight goals for the summer deadline day signing and, after making his move formally permanent earlier this month, Ings has his eyes firmly set on bettering that tally with an ever-increasing injury-free pre-season workload in the tank.
“I wanted to look after myself over the summer after the hamstring issues and niggles I had last season,” he said following his two-goal performance in Saturday’s 3-1 victory over Preston.
“It was important that I came back this time with a good base and I’ve been working hard in pre-season on that and to impress the manager. As a team, we’re getting stronger and positivity is high.”
Key to that believes Ings has been the squad’s time away from Staplewood. A week in Austria laid the foundations for Ralph Hasenhüttl’s pre-season work and the Saints boss will look to add the finishing touches to his team’s Premier League plans in Macau and Dublin next week.
“These trips are good to go away and focus on the work and prepare mentally, tactically and physically. After Austria, the time is there to improve as a team and I’m sure it will be the same next week.”