Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is putting in the hard yards during their preseason tour of Asia and believes his teammates and himself will reap the benefits of training in such a tough climate.
The Arsenal attacking midfielder has excited during their opening two games of the upcoming seasons preparations, and feels the heat and humidity will bode well for his sides fitness when they return to England after two final matches in Japan.
The workout intensity will help train the Gunners to stay mentally switched on when feeling lethargic in the latter stages of their matches, and Oxlade-Chamberlain feels it’s all important preparation as they look to continue their impressive end to their 2012/13 season.
It’s always hard coming back for pre-season, especially when you’re in hot countries with really high humidity.
It’s something that you’re not used to and it can make you feel a bit sluggish and lethargic because it’s harder to get your breath out here. But I think the longer we stay out here, the fitter we’ll get.
I do feel stronger from the first game which was in Jakarta. We’ve got two more games now in Japan and that will only bode well for when we go back to England where it’s not as humid and as hot. It should stand us in good stead for when we get home.
He [Arsène Wenger] says in the meetings that it’s interesting to see when we’re suffering because of the heat, how we can still keep focused mentally and tactically and keep doing our jobs even when we’re really tired.
That’s always something that you come up against during the season when you’re playing tough games and you’re feeling tired towards the end of the game. You can’t let your concentration slip. Pre-season is all about preparation and that’s all part and parcel of it so it’s really good for us.
The Ox scored a stunning goal against Vietnam and admits the top corner stunner was a longtime coming after numerous attempts over the years.
He certainly has a boot on him and the goal will help boost his confidence ahead of the new season.
The Ox continued:
It just came back to me from Theo [Walcott] and I just thought to hit the target and that corner of the goal. Luckily it went right in the top corner.
I’ve tried that one about a million times over the last 10 years and probably only scored about two so it was nice to see that one go in! They say just keep shooting and hopefully it will go in and luckily enough it did.
I think there were some other really good goals, especially Olivier’s hat-trick. I think that was really good and shows that he’s on frightening form, as we saw in the first game. That’s really good for us.
There’s goals coming from all over the pitch which is something that we saw last season. To see it again in pre-season is really positive.
The England midfielder has been catching the eye on tour this summer and is eager to make the attacking midfield role his own next season.
With plenty of competition for places in the Gunners squad it will be difficult for The Ox to feature regularly, but he certainly has the potential to have a fantastic season and attempt to break into the Arsenal regular XI.