John Guidetti is determined to make an early impression after moving into the senior ranks at Manchester City.
The Swedish striker has graduated from the club’s Academy and started training with the first team squad at Carrington last week. He’s now with the Blues in Portland, Oregon, at the start of City’s three-week long tour of the USA and is already making notes on what’s required to make to step up to the next level.
“It's going really well”, he declares. “The lads are taking great care of those of us that came over from the Academy, but of course this is a great opportunity. All you have to do is look around you when are eating, there are some huge stars sat right next to you at the table and it's fantastic to be part of it. I've had to pinch myself a few times, but I'm really happy.
“Pre-season training is hard work but my body feels alright, and they are taking care of us well. If anything goes wrong, there's lots of support to help you.
“It's really professional, but training is a bit quicker so you have to be on your toes. The tempo is high so you have to be ready for anything. Training seems to go much quicker and you have to be alert. Previously you had a bit more time on the ball and to think, but here you have to do it quicker and do it explosively.”
The 18-year-old enjoyed a successful spell on loan at IF Brommapojkarna in his native Sweden in April and May, but he’s not content to rest on his laurels now that he’s back with City.
“I got a few goals but the team picked up a few points as well. I like winning games, but I don't really care if I'm the goal scorer or the one that sets them up. The time in Sweden was great for my confidence, but it does not count for much now. I have to get my feet back on the ground because I'm with the big boys here. I have to see what I can learn from them and take my game on from here.
I want to get some good experience from the tour, see how the top professionals work and how they are on a day to day basis. I'll work hard in training, get fitter and see if I can keep progressing. I'm still a young lad, there's plenty to learn and I want to learn as much as I can.
“All these players have been in my position, they have done what I want to do so I have to listen to them. I'm happy to take it all on board because I'm learning all the time from some great players.”
And like everyone on the US tour, John has had to cope with the demands of jet lag and a body clock that needs to readjust to an eight hour time difference from the UK.
“I've had to adjust to the time difference but I'm getting into a rhythm now, so hopefully I won't be waking up at 5am and finding myself watching 'Kung Fu Panda' anymore!” he laughs.