Reflecting on his first few months at the club since Alan Pardew brought him in, he says:
"I don't think anything surprises you but I do think that not many people get the opportunity to play for a club this size - and that is what you try and say to the players.
"It is certainly time to shake off the hangover of last season's relegation and say 'come on, we are going to go for the Premiership' - and to do that you have to have everyone pushing the same way and fighting for the same cause.
"You want to have the euphoria of the Ipswich game constantly, and to get that we need to make it happen on the pitch as well."
Going abroad for three matches, he believes, will help that happen and he adds:
"There is a big period coming up with pre-season in Sweden, where we will get to know the players individually a bit better because you have a solid few days with them, and that builds a little bit of character.
He says just missing out on promotion last season will spur everyone on and explains:
"You have to use the disappointment of last season to push you on this season.
"At the end of the day there has been a lot of turmoil at the club in the last year and changes in players and management.
"But we wouldn't use that as an excuse because we still thought we had the quality to get that promotion, and that was disappointing for us.
"We are a club that is expected to not only win but play well in every game, but we just didn't do that often enough."