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Postcard From Poznan II

The inside story of the U23s' training camp in Poland

9 July 2019

The Under-23s have gone abroad for part of their pre-season preparation for the first time and our daily postcard is bringing the story back home.

Day Two

Steve Stone spelled it out to his players on day one this was a training camp, not a holiday camp and the boss has been true to his word.

Tuesday was a gruelling day as the lads put in four sessions.

It all started in the pool at 7.30am with relay races and mini circuits pool-side which had the muscles screaming.

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After breakfast the players were out on pitch three for some small-sided games and technical work.

And mid-afternoon saw the toughest test yet as the squad was subjected to the dreaded ‘3-2-1’ running test.

It’s arguably the toughest physical examination of the week but no-one shirked the challenge as they dug in to complete a crucial part of the pre-season work.

Even an ice bath must have been welcome after that, along with a gym session to further fuel the hunger for meal time.

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After that it was time for the legendary ‘spins’ where forfeits are handed out for various ‘offences.’

Judge ‘Killer Mawson’ presided with striker Will Harris acting as jury foreman to oversee punishments which will be enacted later in the week.

‘Good’ To See You

The Clarets’ camp was expecting the welcome arrival of Mace Goodridge on Tuesday night.

The midfielder made an impressive start to his Clarets’ career after signing last summer – figuring in three pre-season games with the first-team and becoming a key player in the Under-23s.

A knee injury cruelly curtailed his season early and required surgery to repair the damage.

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But the former Manchester City and Newcastle United youngster is heading back to full fitness.

And after a delayed arrival due to a family funeral, Goodridge, 19 will be further integrated back into the squad for the remainder of the week.

Ay up, tha’s champion

Self-proclaimed ‘Yorkshire champion’ swimmer Rob Harker walked the walk and talked the talk in the pool.

The former Skipton schoolboy – a class-mate of room-mate Oliver Younger – was one of only two to complete two lengths in the underwater swim.

The big striker had to share the glory with one of the trialists in camp, who also made it there and back.

Is Johann here?

A former team-mate of Johann Berg Gudmundsson was disappointed to learn it wasn’t the first team training out here.

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Arni Vilhjalmsson started his career alongside Gudmundsson at Icelandic club Breioablik and popped along to say hello.

The striker, capped once by Iceland, is currently with Polish club Termalica Nieciecza, who are also using the Hotel Remes as a training base.

His best wishes will be passed onto JBG who is with Sean Dyche’s squad in Portugal.

Friendly fire

The postcard reported yesterday that this is proving a popular pre-season base.

Local top-flight side Lech Poznan and Dutch outfit Vitesse Arnhem are both training here.

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And they played each other this afternoon at the complex’s mini stadium, where the Clarets will play Pogon Szczecin’s second string on Saturday afternoon.

The game was open to supporters and attracted a healthy crown, and it appeared, local television coverage.

For the record, the Poles won 2-0.

Clean bill of health

Physio Antony Reed is pleased to report an empty treatment room – a healthy state of affairs with a compliment of 23 players two days in.

Tight fit

Being a kitman at a near week-long training camp is no easy gig.

Getting everything there and back is a major logistical exercise, while keeping kit laundered and ready on time is another key task.

That’s presumably why ‘kitman Dan’ was sufficiently distracted to be trying to squeeze through a six-inch gap in a fence complete with a bag of a dozen balls.

Asked what he was trying to do by Steve Stone, his later response: “I was trying to be subtle.”


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