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03.08.2007 16:54

Training resumes in China

David Saura

Physical work was the focus of the first training session for the FC Barcelona in Beijing as 2,500 fans looked on from the stands in the Feng Tai Stadium.

WEB_TARDE_18.jpgJust 13 hours after landing in the Chinese capital and with only a short rest, Frank Rijkaard's players wer put through their paces for teh first time on tour. The session was held in the venue for the team's openig game against Beijing Guoan on Sunday.

Physical work

WEB_TARDE_05.jpgThe incredible support in the stands included a giant senyera with the motto 'Visca el Barça y Visca Catalunya' emblazoned on it and everyone present seemed to enjoy watching their heroes close up. When the players finally began kicking the ball the fans became more animated, but they had to wait a while for that.

The session began with the routine warm-ups and exercises and then the physical work began as the players split into pairs and trained in the middle of the pitch. The goalkeepers, Víctor Valdés Albert Jorquera and Oier Olazábal carried out their personalised training. The squad then collected footballs and looked more comfortable doing their routines.

Kick off

Halfway through the training, that last about 90 minutes, the players began shooting practice, while fans sang and chanted for their favourite players like Thierry Henry and Ronaldinho. The team then broke into two and continued to shoot at goal with their first touch.

Dividing up

WEB_TARDE_12.jpgA small sided game concluded the session and saw the supporters come alive. Rijkaard split the squad into two groups which matched the sides that competed in the two halves of both games in Scotland, with Maxi taking the place of Bojan Krkic. The starting side from the games against Dundee United and Hearts won 3-0 with two goals from Andrés Iniesta and one from Santi Ezquerro.
Training resumes in China
Ball games
The final act of the training session came when the players began to head back to the dressing room, but stopped to meet the fans and give away 25 footballs. Ronaldinho, who was one of the last to go in, was the centre of attention as the supporters waited to see where he would kick his football.

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