Bertrand ready for new season
Former England Under-21 international enjoys summer of growth
Last Updated: August 8, 2012 10:44am
Ryan Bertrand: Chelsea full-back gained invaluable experience at Olympics
Chelsea defender Ryan Bertrand says he is ready for a return to Premier League combat after revelling in the Olympic experience.
The 23-year-old was named in the Team GB squad for the London Games along with team-mate Daniel Sturridge.
Spurred on by the wave of patriotism engulfing the country, Stuart Pearce's men reached the quarter-finals, where they were beaten on penalties.
For Bertrand, it marked the end of a thrilling summer which began with him unexpectedly playing in the Champions League final.
He told the club's official website: "It's been a very good summer, playing in the Olympics was an amazing experience and now I'm looking forward to the season, which starts very soon.
"It was fantastic to learn from players who have had such good careers like Ryan Giggs and Craig Bellamy; it really was a massive learning experience and the opportunity to experience another international setup after England Under 21s.
"Being at a home Olympics does give you that added incentive and to have so much support from all the fans around the country was fantastic."
Roberto Di Matteo has decided his players who were involved in the Olympics should return immediately to the club, rather than be given some time off.
Raring to go
The energetic full-back has welcomed the decision and he believes his fitness levels will be on par with his team-mates following his participation in the showpiece event.
"I had my holidays after the season where it was good to unwind but now it's good to get back to Chelsea," he added.
"It's nice to be back, and training was good. You can see the boys have been working hard on the tour, so things are looking bright for the beginning of the season.
"I managed to play all the games for Team GB bar one so that was good fitness-wise and I'm raring to go."