Rapids midfielder Stefan Aigner began a two-week training stint with Bundesliga club Hoffenheim on Tuesday to gain fitness ahead of the start of Colorado’s preseason later this month.
Aigner, Colorado and new head coach Anthony Hudson will have to get their year off to a sharp start, with the club set to face Toronto FC in a CONCACAF Champions League Round of 16 series beginning on Feb. 20.
Aigner, 30, signed with Colorado last July and recorded two goals and one assist in nine regular season appearances with the Rapids. Prior to moving to MLS, the attacker had spent his entire career in his native Germany, though he never played for Hoffenheim.
“I’m very excited about next season. Everything at the club is moving in the right direction, and the new manager has been very clear about his expectations in regard to fitness,” Aigner said in a statement provided by Colorado to MLSsoccer.com. “So, as a senior player, I want to make sure I’m doing everything I can to come in to preseason camp as fit and ready as possible.”
Rapids sporting director and interim GM Padraig Smith said that the club are “delighted” with Aigner’s decision to build fitness with Hoffenheim ahead of the start of Colorado’s preseason camp.
“Ever since Stefan first arrived he’s been the consummate professional, so it’s no surprise to us that he wanted to go train with a Bundesliga side in order to make sure that he’s coming into preseason camp fully fit,” Smith said in a statement. “We’re delighted with his work ethic and very much look forward to seeing what he can do next season.”