Rolando Aarons is ready to prove himself all over again at Newcastle United – and play his way into Steve McClaren’s starting XI.
Aarons worked through the summer in a bid to put last season’s injury problems behind him.
The 19-year-old missed much of the campaign with hamstring and thigh injuries.
And Aarons – who reported back for the start of pre-season training on Wednesday – is keen to make up for lost time.
The winger forced his way into then-manager Alan Pardew’s plans a year ago thanks to a strong pre-season campaign, and he’s keen to impress new head coach Steve McClaren over the coming weeks.
“You can’t under-estimate pre-season,” said the England Under-21 international.
I didn’t go on holiday to make sure I can play a lot of games this season and push on.Rolando Aarons
“It’s vital, especially as we’ve got a new manager and he wants to look at everyone. I’m looking to kick on.”
Asked if he needed to “prove himself” to McClaren, he added: “I don’t mind proving myself again. It’s exciting. Everyone brings different ideas.
“I’m buzzing. It’s a fresh start for everyone, and I’m happy to be back.”
Aarons impressed playing for England’s Under-20s this summer, and he also worked on his strength and conditioning during the summer break.
“I didn’t go on holiday to make sure I can play a lot of games this season and push on,” he said.
“Rest is a bit over-rated. I’ve had three weeks off, and I spent 10 days of that doing work.
“I haven’t played much this year, so I feel fine.”