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Dawson – Red Bull Salzburg test is extra fitness

8 July 2015

Defender admits scoreline is secondary target

CRAIG Dawson has insisted the most important outcome of Albion’s pre-season friendly with Red Bull Salzburg on Wednesday will be adding to fitness levels.

The defender and his team-mates have been working exceptionally hard during their time in Austria, completing three physically demanding sessions on most days.

The Austrian champions will provide Baggies with their first practise match ahead of the forthcoming Barclays Premier League season, when the sides meet at the Athletic Area in Schladming (ko 5pm UK time).

Dawson admits the competitive nature and will to win will be present as always, but accepts that at this stage of pre-season, minutes under the belt are far more lucrative.

He said: “The main thing for us is continuing to build our fitness levels.

“I don’t think it is any secret that this week in Austria has been really tough, but all the boys are working really hard and have done well.

“It is nice to have a game coming up against Salzburg and obviously as professional footballers we will go into the game wanting to win.

“But we have got to remember that at this point in pre-season the main focus is becoming fitter and fitter.

“We have got to see the match as a chance to get some minutes in and some extra fitness in the bag.

“It’s also an opportunity to build a different kind of fitness level.

“A lot of the boys haven’t played a game over the summer break so it gives us a chance to get some match sharpness in.

“Hopefully it will provide us with a good idea of where we are at fitness wise."

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