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Plenty of air miles for Wright

Bailey Wright has been reunited with his City team-mates after a hectic summer on international duty with Australia.

After the final day defeat to Birmingham City, the 24-year-old returned to hometown Melbourne, before joining up with the national team for a World Cup qualifier with Saudi Arabia, and a friendly against World champions Brazil.

The City defender then played in all three of the Socceroos’ Confederations Cup matches in Russia, facing Cameroon, Chile and competition winners Germany.

“I managed to spend a couple of days with my family in Melbourne when the season finished but then I was straight back to it,” Wright told BCTV.  

“I felt we (Australia) deserved more from our games but it was a great experience to play against top teams in a fantastic tournament.

“It would have been nice to have done better in the Confederations Cup. Some of our performances were good, some not so good, but it was a fantastic experience.

“We now have two important games against Japan and Thailand in the next international break and if we win them, we qualify for the World Cup. That’s what we are trying to achieve – it’s where every footballer wants to be.”

Following Australia’s group stage elimination from the Confederations Cup, Wright was given an extended break by City’s coaching staff, but has now returned to full training at the club’s warm weather camp in Tenerife.

“I spoke with the gaffer and he was happy for me to have some extra time off because it was a busy summer,” he added.

“I went to Melbourne with the family and got away with the missus, which gave me the chance to recharge my batteries and now I’m ready to go again. 

“I think the flight to Tenerife was my 23rd or 24th this summer, and a lot of them were 13 hour stints. It’s a lot of flying but I’m used to it. 

“I feel well rested. I want to be back on the pitch now and be with the boys. Coming away to Tenerife is a perfect way for us to prepare as we will have some good sessions and get fitness under our belts. It’s nice to be back and it’s come at the right time. 

“The boys look sharp and everyone is enjoying being back. We all look fit and the sessions are of a great standard.”

City’s 2017/18 Sky Bet Championship campaign kicks-off in just under three weeks when Lee Johnson’s former club Barnsley visit Ashton Gate, and Wright is chomping at the bit to get going.  

“The sooner August 5th comes the better,” he commented. “Everyone is looking forward to it.

“Pre-season is difficult but you’re doing it for the season. Barnsley will be a good way to start the league and hopefully we can get off to a good start.”

Forever Bristol Members can secure their seat for the season opener here and tickets go on general sale from Monday, July 24th (10am).