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Preparation, 9. January 2019

Gonzalez quickly making his mark

Nicolás Gonzalez reflects on his first six months at VfB Stuttgart, where the 20-year-old has settled quickly following his move from Argentina.

Gonzalez made the biggest decision of his young career last summer when he chose to leave his homeland and make the switch to the Bundesliga with VfB. "We need to and will give him time to develop," said head of sport Michael Reschke at the time. The Argentinian has quickly established himself, though, already racking up 16 top-flight appearances and impressing out wide with his commitment, desire and pace.

"The sporting culture is different here than in Argentina but it's nice," said Gonzalez during the team's training camp in La Manga. "I feel happy at the club and my team-mates give me a lot of support. As well as that, the fans always create a tremendous atmosphere."

Overall the attacker is pleased with how his first six months at VfB have gone, even if he has been playing in a slightly unfamiliar position on the flank. "I'm just happy that I'm playing," he said. "I'll play wherever the coach puts me and I always want to do my job as best I can."

Gonzalez used the festive period to relax at home in Argentina. "I had a very quiet and relaxing time with family and friends," he said.

It wasn't a long break, though, and along with compatriots Santiago Ascacibar and Emiliano Insua, Gonzalez flew from Argentina to Spain on 3 January, one day before the rest of the squad arrived. The No22 has displayed his usual enthusiasm in the training sessions so far in La Manga as he and VfB look to get the second half of the season off to a positive start against 1. FSV Mainz 05 on Saturday 19 January (kick-off 15:30 CET).