Real Madrid returned to training
today in order to prepare for Wednesday's Champions League clash against
Steaua Bucharest at the Santiago Bernabéu. David Beckham made his return
to the squad after missing Saturday's match against Nastic. Cannavaro
and Guti also featured, having recovered from their respective injures.
Coach Fabio Capello started today's workout by dividing the team into
two groups, which were then brought together to conclude the session
with a pressuring and ball control exercise.
After having Sunday off and with Day 4 of the
Champions League group stage against Steaua Bucharest only two days away,
Real Madrid were back to work on Monday for the first of the two
sessions prior to the crucial game. A win against the Romanian side
would be all but assure the Madridistas of qualifying for the Round of
16. Today, the team showed they are working hard to secure their spot
among the elite.
Coach Fabio Capello began the day by splitting his men into two groups.
Those who started against Nastic -Ramos, Cannavaro, Helguera, Roberto
Carlos, Raúl, Diarra, Robinho, Guti and Van Nistelrooy- were under the
orders of fitness trainer Santiago Lozano. The ten field players, minus
Emerson who has a sprained ankle, and Casillas who trained with Franco
Tancredi, jogged and stretched before moving on to progressive speed
drills along the full length of the pitch. They finished off with a
piggy-in-the-middle before rejoining their teammates.
Salgado, Mejía, Raul Bravo, Pavón, Reyes, Ronaldo, Javi García and
Beckham came under the watchful eye of Massimo Neri. Parallel to the
starters, they also practiced short pass and ball control with a
piggy-in-the-middle and similar exercising, but their pace picked up
progressively to finish off with a combined power & speed drill. David
Beckham seemed to have completely recovered from his niggling groin
injury and Míchel Salgado was at it, looking concentrated and intent.
Both great news for Capello. Meanwhile, Cassano trained separately with
physical recovery specialist José Luis San Martín.
Finally, the two groups joined for a long and intense last exercise.
Without the presence of any stoppers, Capello decreed and 30-minute,
eight-a-side practice game over half the training pitch with the
intention of perfecting fast and precise ball movement after
pressurising and stealing the ball.
Bib: Helguera, Pavón, Guti, Ronaldo, Diarra, Bravo, Javi García and
No bib: Cannavaro, Mejía, Beckham, Reyes, Salgado, Raúl, Roberto Carlos
and Van Nistelrooy.
The goalkeepers wrapped things up while Saturday night's starters made
their way to the locker room. The rest of the squad practiced passing
the ball over to the wings, with Ronaldo and Reyes shooting the crosses
from the sidelines. The last session before the match will be tomorrow
Tuesday at 11 am CET.