I’m pleased to say that off the pitch we’ve been on really good trip over to the Airborne war museum which was part educational, part enjoyable and something we all learnt a lot from.
What has amazed us over here is that the facilities tend to be very good wherever you are. We used the hotel’s facilities one morning and the grass and surface were akin to those found at professional clubs. With a game against Vitesse Arnhem in our sights we worked on team shape and did a little bit of fitness work in front of some local fans.
We don’t often get fans at training so it was quite a nice experience for us all. After lunch we set off on our bikes to ride the short trip to the Airborne War Museum. Once inside the museum we watched a short historic video on operation ‘Market Garden’ that took place during World War 2 before looking around the rest of the museum.
All of us found the museum very interesting. It was crazy to actually realise the sacrifices that young people, of a similar age to us, made during the war and how tough their lives were at that time in comparison to ours now.
When we got back from the museum we went straight into dinner. After our meal it was time for a quiz with the whole squad and staff involved. Whilst the scores were being added up there was time for the players who had been fined during the day to get up and sing their song in front of the rest of the team. The best performance of the night was Fahad Rwakarambwe, who beat-boxed some great tunes and shocked everyone with his talent.
After a relaxing evening it was on to the rather more serious business of facing Vitesse the following day before we change training bases for week two.
I think all the players and staff were happy with the performance v Vitesse, in particular the progress we’d made since our defeat last Wednesday.
We focused on identifying areas to play in and when to press and when to hold and while we had made massive strides I think we all recognise there is still further room for improvement.
Since we played at Vitesse’s training ground it was another opportunity to meet some of the Chelsea players.
As we were walking out of the changing rooms, the Chelsea players were walking in. I know I’ve written about the time we met them earlier on the tour, but even the second time we were still really excited, (one of our teammates even got a picture with Gary Cahill and John Terry).
We’ve really enjoyed our stay at the Golden Tulip, the staff were great, the food was good and we have left with a good impression of the hotel. It’s definitely recommended. We’re now staying at Aparthotel which is closer to the city centre. We’re staying at the hotel along with Birmingham, Bradford and Sheffield United.
It’s going to be a tiring week with a trip to Amsterdam, a game on Wednesday and a mini tournament to end the tour.
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