A fresh day dawned, following a night of thunderstorms, in the department of Ain in Eastern France where the First Team squad are based, and for a change it was a bright clear morning with the promise of better weather than had gone before.
As you may remember from yesterday’s blog it was to be an early start and so at 6.45 all and sundry reported with walking/running shoes suitably donned. Then ensued a walk come jog through the forest and up a local “mountain”. It was the perfect start to the day, said he who was some 928 kilometres away in leafy Hampton. From those who were there, it was reported back that “it certainly got the blood flowing”.
Following this early start, it was breakfast and the regular medical prep, before gym warm up and training.
Training today, in warm and muggy conditions, consisted of activation swiftly followed by passing and shooting drills, 3 versus 2 challenges, 9 v 9 and finally some specific positional play. Unfortunately, Luke Daniels had a slightly sore thigh so couldn’t take part but was ably substituted by goalkeeping coach, Simon Royce. Needless to say Roycie rolled back the years in classic style making some vintage saves in both the shooting drill and the 3v2 game. Duly nominated as MOTM by all who observed including himself!!
After what was a heavy session, it was time for lunch.
In the afternoon there was a sleep seminar then it was off to the gym again. There was a basketball session in which Josh Clarke belied his size and took on the mantle of Brentford’s own Meadowlark Lemon. Meanwhile, Harlee Dean and Birthday boy Andreas Bjelland were given a sled pull exercise which involved Rich Clarke (First Team Physiotherapist) as the make weight.
Then it was time for dinner and the word is that the food quality and choice has been first class throughout. Tonight there was an excellent seafood medley to feast upon.
And so to the evening’s entertainment. But first I must fill in a couple of blanks from yesterday. The song that Ryan Woods and Justin Shaibu performed to the best of their limited ability was Paolo Nutini’s “Last Request”. As it happens it was a fitting choice as no one asked them to sing again.
Also I failed to report that Yoann Barbet paid a forfeit for coming last in a fun football based competition last season. His forfeit was to shave off his four year old beard. Ironically the French word for beard is barbe! Check out pictures of the beardless Yoann…you would hardly recognise him. He will of course now be known as Yoann T.
Anyway tonight’s cabaret consisted of just Manny Onariase and Luke Daniels who performed their unique version of The Cheeky Girls “We are the Cheeky Girls”. In truth it wasn’t very good but there again have you heard the original!!
After dinner a few of the lads had a table tennis competition. Dan Bentley partnered Nicolas Jover (Set Piece Coach), Ryan Woods partnered Nico Yennaris, and the two Assistant Head Coaches, Rich O'Kelly and Thomas Frank provided the third duo. It was the Rich and Thomas partnership that proved victorious eventually.
So a heavy day for all concerned which precedes a lighter day tomorrow with some free time for all. Therefore no Blog tomorrow so will be back reporting to you on Thursday.