NEW Perth Glory midfielder Travis Dodd admits he will have mixed emotions when he faces his former club Adelaide United in this weekend's A-League season opener.
The former Socceroos winger played for the Reds from 2005 until last season and also captained the side for much of that time before coach Ian Ferguson convinced him to move to Perth for the new campaign.
Dodd said facing last year's semi-finalists at nib Stadium on Sunday would be a tough test for his new club, but one he was really looking forward to because of his history in Adelaide.
"There's a lot of emotion in the game for me but I can't wait to get out there and play," he said.
"It hasn't really sunk in yet. I'm sure as the week progresses and it's a bit more in the media and when we speak about the game more in training, it will be a weird feeling.
"But you can't get caught up in all the hype around the game because it detracts from my own personal game.
"It was a tough decision (to leave Adelaide), I'm not going to lie. But now that I've been here for five or six months, my family is settled and I'm here at a great club with a great bunch of players, I couldn't be happier. Hopefully that reflects in my game."
Glory will be trying to improve on their last disappointing campaign, where they finished well below expectations in 10th spot, with just five wins from 30 games.
Dodd said it was vital for the team to put that dark period behind them with victory on Sunday, especially because of a tough travel schedule which sees them play seven of their following 10 fixtures on the road.
"It's important that we win all of our home games. To get three points on Sunday is a big job for us, but we're confident," he said.
"It is a great squad that the manager has put together and there are a lot of expectations on us. But I think that can only be a good thing. We've had some good results in the pre-season and everyone is just itching to get out there.
"As a team, we want to go out and make the finals first and foremost. And we want to put in good performances week in, week out, not only for ourselves but for our supporters, who have backed the club for so long.
"They're a great bunch of fans and I'm sure they'll be out in force on Sunday to stick it up Adelaide."
Perth are expected to have a full squad to choose from for the game, with fellow recruit Adam Hughes back in training after recovering from a viral infection.