Roberge wasting no time

by Stuart Vose

Defender settling in and getting to know colleagues.

New boy Valentin Roberge is wasting no time in settling into his new surroundings.

The former Maritimo defender officially joined the club at the beginning of July and met his new team-mates for the first time on Wednesday.

It's straight into pre-season training for the Frenchman, who says it's important to get to know his new colleagues as soon as possible.

“I feel very happy to be here and I like so much what I have seen,” he said. “It is a good group with good personalities.

“The first day was good. We made connections and I tried to speak with everybody and get to know everyone within the group.”

That familiarisation process includes becoming fluent in English, something Roberge says is right at the top of his to-do list.

The defender is one of three French-speaking summer arrivals along with Modibo Diakite and midfielder Cabral.

“We need to make one group,” he added. “We must speak English first. It is important to talk to everyone. We all must speak the same language.

“When I played in Greece and Portugal, there were French players there, but everywhere I went I learned the language. Greek was very complicated!”

Meanwhile Roberge says his new head coach, Paolo Di Canio, has already impressed his passion for the game on the club's new signings.

And the defender says such an attitude is infectious, explaining: “He likes players to be as passionate as he is about the game.

“He wants us to learn and loves what he does. We feel that. He lives football.”