Reds star Jimmy Jeggo says the chance to play a side with the quality and pedigree of Villarreal means his team-mates are happy to still hold off on their holidays.
“The boys look forward to these games, they enjoy them,” Jeggo told reporters on Wednesday when asked about getting up for Friday’s clash at Coopers Stadium.
Adelaide United’s players could now be enjoying the sand and sun anywhere in the world, a well-earned break after a long and arduous Hyundai A-League season.
But they are clearly relishing the rare chance to play the club dubbed “The Yellow Submarines”.
“You don’t get a chance to play a team of such a high level often. It’s only a couple of extra weeks and it’s a good chance to test yourself,” he said.
“If you play well there’s always people watching. For each player, it’s great to play against these players and see how close you can get and how you match up to them.
“With the season finished and coming up to the break, it’s a good way to finish off the year and test yourself against such a good side.”
The La Liga outfit will arrive in Adelaide on Thursday morning for their first trip Down Under in the club’s history.
With a string of internationals throughout their 19-man touring party, Villareal will prove tough opponent for the Reds but Jeggo isn’t one for reading too much into reputations.
“There’s no point selling yourself short and telling yourself you’re not going to be able to cope,” this year’s NAB Young Player of the Year said.
“We go into the game knowing they are class and it’s going to be hard but we’re capable of matching it with them and that’s what we’re going to try and do.
“They’ve just finished their season, we’ve just finished ours so from that point it’s a level playing field. It’s going to be a challenge but one we’re looking forward to.”