John Ruddy ready for a tough pre-season


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John Ruddy says he is prepared for a tough pre-season with his club Wolves preparing for Europa League football in the next few weeks.

The goalkeeper joined team-mates for the first day of pre-season training on Thursday having had a break after a successful first season back in the Premier League.

Having been promoted from the Championship in 2017-18, Wolves coped with the step-up in style, finishing seventh in the table, a place good enough for this season’s Europa League qualifiers.

They enter the competition at the second qualifying stage with a third qualifying round and a play-off round to determine whether they will compete in the group stages.

Before that Wolves travel to China for the Premier League Asia Trophy with games against Newcastle and either West Ham or Manchester City. So, a tough six weeks lie ahead for Ruddy and the squad and he says it will be different this year because of the demands of China and Europa League qualifying. He told the club’s website: “We’re going to find it different.

“There’s a bit of travelling, but in terms of the Europa League, we’ve got a squad where most of the players played in the Championship and understand what it’s like to play Saturday-Tuesday, so Thursday-Sunday we should be able to take in our stride. We just have to deal with the travel aspect.”

Wolves start the new Premier League season away to Leicester on August 11 before kicking off their home campaign a week later with the visit of Manchester United to Molineux.

Wolves are at 3.10 to win on the opening day with Leicester 2.38 and the draw is 3.30. Wolves are 5.00 to finish next season in the top six of the Premier League.

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