TOMAS Egert is doing all the right things in pre-season, according to Burton Albion manager Nigel Clough.
The Czech defender joined Albion towards the end of last season on a short-term contract after coming to Derby University to study Sports Management.
Clough revealed at the end of the season that Egert would be given the opportunity to join The Brewers in pre-season training, while Egert returned to the Czech Republic to build his fitness ahead of the squad's return to St George's Park.
And the Brewers' boss is pleased with how Egert has fared so far in pre-season.
"Tomas has come back for pre-season, so he’s in our plans although no deal has been done," Clough said.
"He’s come back - he said he was going away to the Czech Republic to work on his fitness and he’s certainly done that.
"He’s up there in the top running group. We saw bits of him last season but he’s somebody who could provide us not only with defensive cover but also have a chance of starting.
"He can play centre-half or right-back, and we think he could even do a holding midfielder job. He’s somebody who has done well so far and we said we’d give him an answer by the end of the month."
Clough admits that the recent heatwave in Britain has been a factor for the players in their pre-season preparations - and the staff have had to adapt accordingly.
But the weather can also be a positive.
"It’s been a factor and it’s something we have to take into account," said Clough. "(We are) reducing the times in sessions and (ensuring) lots of water breaks.
"This time last year we were wet and cold so it’s a complete contrast to 12 months ago! But in some ways they have to work that bit harder, which is good.
"There’s always that good chance that the first few games will be played in warm conditions, so at least they’ll be used to it."