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By Doug Higginbottom, Thu 17 October 2013 14:18
Managed to get along today after the boring international break and hoping to see the full squad out for a change.The good news was seeing Vinnie train and as far as I could tell it was a full squad minus Rodwell and Boyata who both played a full 90 minutes last night.No Richard Wright so Johansen took his place.
Pellegrini's briefing started with a round of applause which I guess would have been for those players who qualified for the WC finals.After initial warm ups it was into 3 keep ball circles played with a slight difference.I couldn't quite work it out but it seemed each time the two in the middle touched the ball 2 players from each circle went to join one of the other groups.The players seemed to know what the criteria was after initial hiccups.
The good thing watching this was how comfortable Vinnie was when he was in the middle twisting and turning.He didn't stay for all parts of the training session so no guarantees he is ready to play yet but clearly close at worst.Demechelis also involved and he lasted the whole session.He had a brace thing on one leg but didn't seem in any way discomforted.
After the circles it was a split with all the players who had played a full game in midweek just doing some running before going in and then just Zaba and Sergio staying a little longer.The others worked closely with Pellegrini on some attack v defence, either 2 on 2 or 3 on 3 and then after each attack a cross was thrown in.One Silva header was sublime.
Watching today outside the fence was me and one cameraman perched high in a tree and just one lone figure inside.The skipper himself Tony Book.After some time on those situations they started working on 5 v 5.I think the back 5 were Lescott,Garcia,Micah,Clichy and Demechelis against Yaya,Milner,Silva,Guidetti and Fernandinho.Oh yes I forgot to mention Guidetti was there for the full session and looking quite good too.Hopefully a sign he is getting close to playing again.
Three of them were really vocal both in terms of organising and encouraging.Joe Hart as he always is plus Micah and Joleon.This session and the attack v defence before it were high intensity and high quality.Just a pity for me it wasn't the full squad but watching Silva at close quarters is always a real pleasure.His close ball control under pressure whilst looking for a pass is superb.They moved from this into a 6 a side game which is where I left with some good stuff still being played and much more entertaining than last night's EDS game.