Dickson Etuhu began his pre-season training early

Dickson Etuhu feels Fulham are ‘making steady progress’ despite failing to beat Danish Superliga side HB Koge in their first pre-season friendly.

The Nigerian midfielder endorsed John Arne Riise’s view that the early summer games are designed more to pick up match sharpness than morale boosting wins as it is difficult to judge how well a league season will develop until two or three months into the campaign.

It was a good fitness game for everyone to see where we are at and to work our legs. It’s nice to make steady progress during pre-season and work on our fitness with the ball.

It is a bit different from training. It’s always difficult especially when the opposition already has a few games under their belt. It was a good game to play in. You get more fitness when you play football anyway, no matter how much running you do.

Returning to pre-season traing wasn’t as much of a shock to Etuhu as it might have been for some of his team-mates after the 30 year-old decided to begin his summer fitness work earlier than usual having missed on regular first-team action during the second half of last season.

 I did some fitness work in the close season and for me it was more to do with not playing as much last season. It was important to give myself a chance to catch up a little bit with the boys that had been playing and it’s proved worthwhile.