Lovely sunny day at Carrington as Neil and I were joined by a host of Italian watchers and Noel Gallagher as a special guest. Cameras all round outside the fencing but I think the BBC were following him inside so no doubt a special feature coming your way soon. Patrick took him on a tour inside and stayed with him when they came out for some of the training session. Sharon was also snapping away and the Inside City cameras were also rolling. With a bit of luck I will have stayed off camera!
19 on show today with Micah having a little extra rest (no problems there we were assured). Plenty of new boots on display as well for Clichy, Milner, Kolarov and Edin that I noticed. The first exercise was keep ball and way away from us but still the noise and fun was evident. Hard to focus on it too closely with all the camera action going on so close. Then over they came for a quick strong passing game, just one and two touch. Switching to the game scoring bewtween two poles and goals from Zaba, Nigel, Carlos, Milner and Kolarov kept Nigel in a great mood. He was keeping score and making sure everyone knew how many his team were winning by!
Then over to play with the small nets. Kolarov made a point of winding up Mario but it was a goal from Mario that clinched this game after some slick inter passing with Barry. A few more exercises before all those who played a full international finished for the day. Apart that is for Joe Hart who played assistant referee and Milner, Nigel and Vinnie just stayed to watch and barrack the players. A group of EDS players came over to make up the 2 teams. Reece W, MJ, Benali, Ellabdalloui, Scapuzzi, Mancini, Bunn, Suarez plus Atillio to balance the teams out.
Joe Hart took a lot of my attention as he was very close and making very exaggerated gestures most of the time and with the occasional dance thrown in. Shame he lost his concentration a little when he should have been flagging off side! So much of the game today revolved around top goalkeeping:
- Brilliant save from Yaya by Costel turing a drive onto the bar
- MJ headed just wide from a Scapuzzi pass
- Edin just wide with Nigel screaming at him from the sideline
- Taylor saved at Mario’s feet and sent him flying
- Costel saved well from CT 2 or 3 times and was starting to look unbeatable
- A great backheel from Edin in a tight situation got approval from the crowd (JM/VK and NDJ)
- Edin then beat Costel but hit the bar
- Kolo was urging his team to win
- Bunn broke through from the left but Stu blocked at point blank range
- Another Stu save from Mario
- Nigel was urging the white bib team to win
- More great skill from Edin got the approval of the watching players
- Golden goal time was announced
- Mario broke free down the right to cross for Bunn but Stu somehow saved twice from close range
- another save from Mario
- then a Kolarov shot was half saved and Scapuzzi knocked in the rebound…Nigel wasnt a happy man :)
That was that and CT went off with a physio to do more work as Mario and Pizarro stayed for some penalty practice.In case you didnt know but Mario is quite good at penalties!