Sydney FC and striker Alessandro Del Piero have been greeted by hundreds of excited Japanese fans on the eve of the forward playing his first match back with the club, as part of the build-up to the 2013/14 Hyundai A-League season.
Sydney FC and striker Alessandro Del Piero have been greeted by hundreds of excited Japanese fans on the eve of the forward playing his first match back with the club, in build-up to the 2013/14 Hyundai A-League season.
The Italian superstar joined his Sky Blues team mates for an evening training session in front of around 200 fans at the Saga Stadium, before tonight-s match against Sagan Tosu at the nearby Best Amenity Stadium.
Del Piero signed autographs for his adoring Asian supporters before rushing off for a welcome reception with the Sydney FC team, where he was guest of honour.
It was only his second training session back with his team mates since pre-season began but first team coach Rado Vidosic believes he will adjust easily to their new footballing philosophy.
“He-s a superstar so he should have no problems fitting in. He-s played in the team last year and although we are changing a little bit it this year hopefully it won-t take him too long,” said Vidosic.
“But this is only his second session and in the next few weeks we-ll lift it and see more from him and the team.”
Vidosic was also delighted with the turnout from fans for the Sky Blues Tuesday evening training session.
“It was excellent to see that there-s a huge support for the game in this country and obviously Alessandro was a big draw card for that.
“Hopefully it will be even bigger for the game and we can put in a good performance.”
Sydney will have Nick Carle fit after the midfielder flew out to Japan separately from the team, having overcome a bout of illness.
Sagan Tosu currently sit 15th in the top division of the J-League and coach Vidosic, in charge this week while Head Coach Frank Farina completes his Pro Licence, is expecting a tough game.
“They are very direct with long balls, so we need to be smart, stop them from playing the ball forward and be able to win the ball in the air.
“We do not expect to see miracles but we do expect to see improvement on our last two performances, then I will be very happy.”
The Sagan Tosu game is not being televised into Australia and there is no live stream however you can follow the Sky Blues' progress on twitter.
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