The EFL Championship is one of many European leagues that resume play this weekend and Hull City captain Eric Lichaj is excited to be back in action.
Lichaj and English second tier side Hull City return to domestic action, facing off with Middlesbrough on Saturday. The American veteran has made 14 appearances this campaign, while captaining Grant McCann’s side to a current 12th place spot in the standings. Lichaj is hoping that the break helped the team refuel and recharge with a busy period approaching.
“Hopefully the break will be an advantage,” Lichaj said in an interview for the club’s website. “We had a little bit of time off and it was nice for the lads to get the chance to go away and spend some time with family, especially for the ones that don’t have family members in the area. It was good to recharge our batteries but everyone is back and fully focused on the challenges that lie ahead.”
“I prefer it when the games come thick and fast. That’s the most enjoyable part of being a professional football – playing games. It’s what we all love to do and we’ll look to get as many wins as possible on the board in the coming fixtures. I know we lost our last game going into the break, but the spirit in the camp has been good during the past two weeks.”
Hull have posted a 6-4-6 record so far under first-year head coach McCann, with Lichaj being a leader for a fairly young group of players. The Tigers have won three of their last four league matches coming into Saturday’s trip to the Riverside Stadium, only losing 1-0 to West Bromwich Albion.
Not a clear-cut favorite for Premier League promotion, Hull have grinded their way to 22 points from 16 matches. 22-year-old Jarrod Bowen leads the team with nine goals, while veteran Kamil Grosicki has chipped in four from midfield. Lichaj, the only defender on Hull’s current roster over the age of 30, has plenty of confidence for the next few months of the season.
“We’ve won three out of the last four games and we’ve climbed up the table a bit on the back of that. We’re not too far away from the play-off spots now and that is what we are aiming for as our target this season.”
“We want to be in the mix come the end of the season, so we need to strive to be better every single day and that’s exactly what we’ve been doing during the break.”
Starting Saturday the Tigers have 10 league matches from then until Jan. 1st, 2020, with three of them coming against current top-six sides. Lichaj will look to carry on his strong season against the Wearside club this weekend.