David Coles has revealed he cannot wait to get under way after being officially confirmed as the club's new goalkeeping coach.
The 46-year-old will be working with Robert Green, Peter Kurucz and Marek Stech, having just left Portsmouth where he oversaw the return of David James to the England reckoning. Coles had previously worked with the likes of Paul Jones and Antti Niemi during his Southampton days and will not be fazed by the challenge ahead.
"I am delighted to be here," he told whufc.com as he had a first look around the Boleyn Ground since arriving. "It is a fantastic club with a great reputation and obviously it is a major force in the Premier League.
"It is a new challenge. It is another England goalkeeper. I have spoken to Robert and he seems like a fantastic fella. I have obviously talked to him and seen him when I have been on the opposing side so I know what he is all about. I am looking forward to working with all three of them."
"I was at Southampton for eight or nine years, I was at Portsmouth for four and a half years. I am quite a loyal person but this is the biggest club I have been to in my time as a coach. I am excited about the new season. I can't wait for it to start on Monday and then we have the tour and games to look forward to."
Coles has a strong working relationship with new manager Avram Grant, built up from their time together at Fratton Park. "I worked with Avram before when Harry Redknapp was at the club, he brought him in as a technical director and from there we built up a rapport.
"When he came back as manager last season it went from strength to strength. I like to think he has faith in me and I have certainly got faith in him. It was fantastic to get this all tied up after coming back from Australia where I have been coaching 160 youngsters in 14 days."
Coles relishes working with up and coming prospects and will start work with just Kurucz and Stech on Monday, the club's Hungary and Czech Republic Under-21 goalkeepers. He also keeps an eye on Academy prospects, claiming that honing the talents of youngsters helps to keep him sharp.
"I love that part [working with youngsters]. At Portsmouth I liked to spend time with the academy goalkeepers and that is what I have been doing in Australia. That is important for me because as a coach I don't want to go stale and i think you learn from young kids.
"You can implement certain training regimes and traits into a daily basis with your pro goalkeepers and vice versa with the younger ones. It is not all about me as a coach, it is about developing the goalkeepers, improving them and learning myself. The day you stop learning is the day you stop living."
It is his one-to-one contact with Green that will perhaps dominate once the new season starts, with the England keeper looking to maintain the fantastic form that has seen him make 126 consecutive starts in the Barclays Premier League.
"The one-to-one relationship is the most important thing. He has to trust me and I have to trust him, somedays we will agree and somedays we won't. It is part and parcel of our job. Coach and goalkeeping coach are totally different roles. They work with 20 odd players and I work with probably three or four on a regular basis. The relationship is really important."