Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel was pleased to see about 10,000 spectators turn out to watch open training at the ANZ Stadium in Sydney, and is excited to see the scale of the Blues’ Austrlian support when they run onto the pitch on Tuesday in a club friendly against Sydney.
After the Stamford Bridge side met their Australian A-League opponents in Sydney, they have been told to expect a welcoming atmosphere and a big crowd packed into the 83,000-capacity stadium.
“We’re here to play well, and show why we’re the champions,’ the Nigeria international told the club’s official website.
“We’re used to big crowds and good atmospheres, so we’re looking forward to that and it was nice to see so many fans come to watch us training as well.
“So far it’s been a good trip, I’m feeling a little jet lag since we arrived in Sydney, so I’ve been resting and sleeping a lot, but it will be a great game, Sydney had a good game against Spurs (Tottenham Hotspur) and will want to do even better against us.”
Meanwhile, Blues defender Nathan Ake is expecting to play in front of the biggest crowd of his career so far on Tuesday.
The Netherlands U20 international told the club’s official website: “It was good to see so many people for a training session before the game. I didn’t realise we had so many fans in Australia, it was unbelievable.
“Of course we look forward to the game tomorrow, to see the whole stadium full, and it’s a beautiful stadium as well. I think it will be the biggest crowd I have played in front of.”
The 20-year-old started a left-back in Chelsea’s friendly against Thailand All-Stars on Saturday, and was pleased to have a positive impact alongside some of his fellow youngsters.
“It’s good for the young boys to play, everyone wants to play and we’re enjoying the trip,’ he added.
“I’ve never been to these places and it’s nice to get the experience.”