Hello everybody,

It's been a good pre-season for me. I've been away with the first team to New Zealand and Germany and it's been a great experience.

The trips away with the first team have given me a chance to prove myself in front of the gaffer, and I got some good minutes on the pitch last Saturday against Schalke, which was fantastic to play in such a big stadium against such a big team.

Coming up against players like Kevin-Prince Boateng is something I'll cherish - it's a shame that Draxler and Huntelaar were still away - but it was a very good experience and it was nice to get a good result too.

You improve with every training session and experience like that. Being in and around the first team, the older players who are physically stronger than you, it's always good to train with them and adapt to those sort of situations.

In New Zealand, I went behind the camera to film some behind the scenes footage, which you can see here.

I wouldn't have minded doing the SkyWalk myself, it's not something you can do every day, but I missed out on the rock, paper, scissors.

As you can see, Danny Whitehead didn't really fancy it! He looked really scared when he was up there.

For myself now, there's an Under-21s game against Aston Villa on Friday and the boys have had some good resutls in pre-season They're looking really strong going into the first game, which is in the European competition agaisnt PSV on Tuesday.

My aim for the season is to get as many first team games as possible and push on. It's good to play for the 21s, but the ambition is to play in the first-team, so that's what I'm hoping to do.

Matthias