Michael Owen: Settle in at a new club

Get to know your team-mates off the pitch and you'll fit right in, says former Real Madrid striker, Michael Owen

“I’ve just moved teams and want to settle in. How can I go about becoming one of the lads?”
Tommy Kazas, via Facebook

More after the break

Michael Owen says: 

“You can’t play well if you’re not comfortable within yourself and your surroundings. When I moved to Real Madrid I wanted to show the squad I was confident, but also humble.

When I first entered the dressing room, I didn’t want to be first in, in case I sat on Zidane or Ronaldo’s seat. It’s a hierarchical sport and you need to show due respect to the top players at the club.

When you start with a new team, the last thing you worry about is what you do on the pitch. Yes, from a tactical point of view, you should be more intent on listening to tactics and where you go for things like set-pieces, but once the whistle goes you learn on your feet.

Focus in training and match practice and you’ll soon know the strengths and weaknesses of your team-mates. But more than anything, get to know them away from training – it’s the best way to integrate yourself into the squad.”

Owen was speaking at the launch of Sportlobster’s iPhone/Android app

For more football tips see:
How to be the new guy
Squad integration
Fit in at a new club
Forge a match-winning bond
Build unshakeable team spirit
How to build team spirit

Promo sitewide