MONDAY 30TH JULY
Departed Moor Farm at 3:00am, (too early) ready for a flight from Birmingham to Amsterdam at 6:00am. From the airport we travelled straight to the hotel, everyone was still half asleep.
Once unpacked we went for a walk around Den Haag, to familiarise ourselves with the surroundings. We had lunch at 1:00pm before travelling down to the complex for a training session; this consisted of various technical practices.
Leaving the hotel, we travelled back to the hotel for an evening meal and an early night, which was much needed!
TUESDAY 31ST JULY
After a good night’s sleep, we dragged ourselves from the bed ready for a day full of training. Reporting for an 8:30am breakfast, the weather looked nice for the day ahead.
The morning training session was intense focusing again on technique and attacking play. Once training was finished we headed back to the hotel for a quick lunch, before returning back to the training ground. For the afternoon training session we had a guest coach from the Den Haag’s first team, an experience we couldn’t have had back in England.
This session was eye opening; with different methods of playing and technique being exposed to us, this was the general feeling around the team. After an evening meal at 6:00pm the team had some free time to go into the town and shop etc.
WEDNESDAY 1ST AUGUST
On Wednesday we had just about caught up with all sleep lost from the flight on Monday. Waking up at 8:00am we reported down to breakfast again at 8:30am for a cooked buffet which had everything an athlete could require.
We made way down to the training ground for a 10:30am start; the training session was light with everyone’s focus on the game that evening. The session consisted of us walking through the tactical plays in preparation for the game. For lunch we had a main meal; making sure we ate the correct things in preparation for the game.
We returned to the training ground at 5:15pm for a 6:30pm kick off. After taking a 1-0 lead in the 5th minute, it never felt like would lose the game. Den Haag enjoyed long spells with the ball, but never really threatened with the possession.
The game finished 2-1 in favour of us, however if anything we need to learn from Den Haag and keep possession better. After the game we left the hotel quickly ready to eat at 9:30pm before relaxing in the hotel at night.
THURSDAY 2ND AUGUST
After yesterday’s result we had an extra hour in bed, having to report for a 9:30am breakfast, this proved very popular amongst the lads.
The coaches decided to take us down to the beach for a cool down in the sea. The activities on the beach consisted of swimming running and even crawling in the sand. At 11:30am we headed back to the hotel for a much needed shower and a meal. At 2:30 pm we went into Den Haag city centre for a tour of the area; this allowed us to see historical and interesting information as well as have a taste of the culture of here.
Before heading back to the hotel we were given free-time to go around the city to go to shops. Managing to catch the tram back by ourselves we reported for dinner at 6:30pm; this was followed by a quiz for everyone on the tour (inevitably won by the coaches team). We headed up to our rooms at 10:00pm to relax and catch up with the Olympics.