Crystal Palace captain Mile Jedinak insists he is “ready to go” after returning to club duty following his summer exploits with Australia at the World Cup.
Jedinak skippered the Socceroos in Brazil and became the first ever Palace player to score in a World Cup when he netted from the spot in the 3-2 defeat to eventual bronze medallists the Netherlands.
The 29-year-old was granted extra time off by manager Tony Pulis after representing his country throughout June, meaning he missed out on the training camp in Austria and the 13-1 victory over GAK Graz last Wednesday.
But the midfielder has now been re-united with his Eagles teammates in the United States of America on their pre-season tour.
Speaking to cpfc.co.uk following their first Stateside training session in Columbus, Jedinak said: “I’m ready to go. I was lucky enough to get an extra week off which was great and I’m very thankful and grateful to all the management here that they allowed me to do that.
“It gave me a little bit more time to spend with my family. It’s just about switching off and giving yourself a break, not just physically, but mentally as well. Over the last two years, it’s been my longest break.
“There was a lot of mental fatigue going on there, but now I’m back and ready to go.”
Jedinak added that his fellow Eagles have been quick to tell him their own personal summer tales – including details of their gruelling week in the Austrian hills.
“When I was told I was going to come on this trip, you are trying to prepare for the season so you want to get a bit of game time in,” Jedinak said.
“It’s always about the preparation, the training and just being around the boys, being around everybody again. It’s great to see all the faces and hear all the stories from over the summer.
“But we are going to be working really hard, I know they’ve worked really hard already in Austria – they’ve told me so themselves – which is great.
“They all look really, really fit at the moment which is great. As long as we can maintain that and keep pushing each other forward, we’ll be ready to go.”
The full interview with Mile Jedinak, which also includes his reflections on the 2014 World Cup campaign, will be available to watch on Palace Player tomorrow.