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By Doug Higginbottom, Tue 07 August 2012 17:09
Back at last! I popped along this morning in the pouring rain to find they woudltn be out till 3pm but I did manage to bump into geoff Shreeves who arrived in a taxi ( there was a photo shoot of some kind) He was somewhat confused when I asked him if anyone had told him his accreditation at Carrington had been revoked!Back at 3pm at least the rain had stopped and I wandered round to the Sale Sharks side where they were setting up up.I say wandered but really it was hard work thrashing through the undergrowth with my ladder! Not that easy to see but for the first time ever I was thankful for photographers who have made a hole which I was able to look through and see just enough.Barry was already out just doing running work while Kidd, Fausto and others were setting up. The players came out slowly and after the keepers ,first was Suarez followed by a young lad with afro type hair. Not sure who he is! Maybe Pozo? (looked good though) One impressive thing I did notice was the quality of the pitch .Last time I saw it it had been reseeded and today it was perfect.The only player apart from Barry not involved when they all got out was Micah. Great to see the skipper there even if only at the start as he then went away to work with a physio and just did running. The group were in great spirits as you would expect and this was possibly the first training session where they were all together doing the same work since least season. Mario has started with a blonde stripe on his head and matching yellow boots!Nothing special at all in the training with gentle jogging followed by a little more harder running. Then a game of keep ball and all the time I could hear Joe Hart's voice in the background as he was going through some hard with with the rest of the keepers. Gunnar Neilsen maybe as number 3 this season?Best thing in the passing game was to see David Silva's touch as silky as ever. The guy is a joy to watch but it was good to see a competitive session like this with good effort and quality all round. Then it was time for Mancini to take a team away for some tactical work in preparation for the game on Sunday. The remaining players just carried on with some routines and then a keep ball exercise. After about 15 minutes the groups swapped around before it was time for the game at the end.Plenty of early efforts on goal but nobody really looked like scoring. Nigel, Dennis and then Sergio with an acrobatic effort were closest before Yaya headed wide. A brilliant recovery from Gael stopped what would have been a cert. Silva and Milner were working superbly together, Joleon looking strong and composed. JL seemed to catch Aguero in one incident but he got no sympathy from anyone. Nigel smacked him on the bum and told him to get up. Then Nigel missed the best chance of the match sidefooting wide from the center of the goal.Carlos came the closest when he made space superbly and hit the bar before the golden goal shout came up. And from nowhere it was Mario who found space to toe punt one past Joe from fairly close range. His reaction was no surprise as he moves away and starting taking his shirt off. 2 shirts and a bib actually so it took a while but then came the victory pose as his team mates came over laughing.All good fun and glad to be back even though the wrong side of the fence.