Liverpool playmaker Adam Lallana has set himself targets for this season, and believes that having a full pre-season under his belt will help him achieve that, according to an interview with the club's website.
After signing for around £25 million from Southampton last summer, Lallana missed a lot of pre-season action with a knee injury, and didn't start playing regularly until September, while injuries throughout the season meant he was in and out of the side.
He started the win over Stoke City, playing an hour of the game before Brendan Rodgers introduced Emre Can into the game to make a slight change of shape.
Lallana told the official Liverpool website: “Anyone will tell you pre-season is an important stage for a professional footballer, where you work extra hard and put your body through a lot.
“I want to have a good season, do well and add more goals to my game. I feel if I stay fit and out on the pitch, that’s what I’ll do.
“I’ve set myself targets, but that’s personal to me. I’ll just be looking to contribute as much as I can towards the team and towards a successful Liverpool campaign.”
Lallana's position in the side seems to be strange one as it's hard to fit him into the side comfortably without upsetting a lot of the team's dynamic.
Against Stoke City he lined up on one of the flanks but had a minimal impact, while at times he has been played just behind the striker and sometimes as part of a midfield three. All of those areas of the side is where there appears to be a lot of fierce competition, so he really needs to find some of the form from pre-season, where he managed to find the net stylishly on a couple of occasions.
Given there is a lot of talent in the Liverpool side, and a lot of games to play, Lallana should be able to find some decent form and rhythm this season for the Reds, but if somebody else impresses he could find himself out of the side again. Contribution in games is going to be key for Lallana, rather than just solid performances.