Tour 2012: Bailey Blog 1 arrival
- 09 July 2012 07:26
- Posted by Chris Bailey
Austria’s hills are alive with the sound of footballers’ boots!
It seems that the altitude is a new buzzword in football as sides from all over Europe head for the heights this summer.
Everton are training in the Alps’ shadows, Monaco's players are in our hotel here in Seefeld (boss Claudio Ranieri stopped for a chat and quick picture with us) and Dynamo Kiev staff paid a visit to town last evening.
A host of other teams are also due in and out of the Tyrol region in the coming weeks.
It is not hard to see why; the picture postcard chalets and abundant hotels are framed majestically by the brooding mountains. It is a beguiling place for a summer training camp. And the thunderstorms are amongst the best you could ever witness.
Even if you have never visited this part of the world, those au fait with the Winter Olympics - and ski-jumping in particular - will be familiar with Garmisch-Partenkirchen and Innsbruck.
Not that some things were all that portentous for the website journos and citytv crew on the outward journey on Sunday. The short hop north and east took the best part of 14 hours thanks to a Lufthansa flight having the catch all disease – ‘a tech fault’. Apparently there is no cure!
That led to a re-routing to Munich and then on to Seefeld, the team’s base for the next two weeks by coach.
One of our party, who shall remain nameless (at least for the time being) amused the group by reckoning that we would save time as our bags would ‘go straight to Innsbruck’ and Edin Dzeko broke the boredom of waiting for the carousel in Munich Airport to crank into action by stopping by to say hello.
Tanned and wearing flip-flops he looked trained to the minute already and even left with a smile when we mention his recent film premier encounter with Angelina Jolie.
The welcome afforded the team in Seefeld was both warm and affectionate. Traditional music and the town’s youngsters were the centrepiece along with the Mayor. Seefeld had even put a sign at its entrance welcoming City though some United fans had tampered with it – sadly even here!
A smiling Carlos Tevez was the first man encountered in the team hotel; though after training in Manchester and then flying out the players were quick to bed for an early start to Day Two when training will be in three small groups in the morning followed by team work in the afternoon – there is no rest pre-season.
And there is no respite for us either. Later today we will bring you a video interview with skipper Vincent Kompany and another first team player (subject tbd), training in words, a picture gallery and a video of the day’s activities.