hopes to make the most of his big opportunity this weekend as the Swans head to Aston Villa.
With defender Chico Flores serving the first of a three-game suspension and fellow centre-backs Kyle Bartley and Garry Monk sidelined through injury, Tate looks set to partner Ashley Williams in the heart of defence.
It will be Tate’s first top-flight start since he skippered the side in the Swans’ first Premier League match last season.
For Tate, who turned 30 earlier this month, it is the perfect reward for the hard work he put in during the summer preparing for the new campaign.
“I trained all the way through the summer to give myself the best chance of playing this year.
“A couple of days after the Liverpool game last season I was back in the gym, and I was training every day in the gym and doing mountain runs on my holiday in Halkidiki.
“Coming back from a broken leg, I had to work even harder but now I am fully fit and I’m hoping to start on Saturday.
“Chico is suspended now and I have the chance to push my cause and try to stay in the team.
“Leading the club out as captain for the first Premier League game was the biggest achievement I could have at the club – that comes above Wembley – and now I’m hoping for my first league start since then.
“Myself and Ash have played alongside each other plenty of times, so that will be no problem, while we could have Ben Davies on the left. He is a young lad that’s quite quiet off the pitch but very vocal on it, which is really pleasing.
“So we’re all really looking forward to the game.”
Tate, who overcame a broken leg last season, has been in regular contact with team-mate Neil Taylor after the left-back was ruled out for the season with a similar injury.
He added: “I’ve spoken to Neil a few times because I know what he’s going through.
“Neil will be fine – he has got the right frame of mind to get over an injury like this.
“I remember when I came back into training and after about four weeks I went into a 50/50 challenge with Joe Allen, and I thought it’s either now or never.
“If you don’t go into it then you won’t know how it will be until the next time. But I did go into the challenge and fortunately I came through it.
“I was stronger mentally for coming through it, and I know Neil will as well.”
Watch the full interview with Tatey now on Swans Player.
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