BROCKHALL SESSIONS - July 2001
The Blues were approached
by Blackburn Rovers with an offer of
swapping training facilities for a week - the
Rovers Academy lads would use Clitheroe's humble
Shawbridge ground (and changing rooms, balls,
bibs, etc!) while the Blues would have the use of
Rovers multi-million pound state-of-the-art
training complex at nearby Brockhall. Naturally
the offer was accepted!
As the Rovers youngsters received a valuable
lesson on what footballing life would be like
should they not make the grade, the Clitheroe
lads had a tremendous experience, finding out
just how much work and effort the professionals
put in. Here is Ex-manager David Burgess'
Brockhall Diary - a fascinating insight into how
the other half live.
Monday 16th July.
When we arrived Sky Television were on hand to do
a report for skysports.com and spent approx. half
an hour recording the lads training and even
interviewed me! Training went very well with Eric
Kinder (u16 coach) showing how the Academy lads
warm up, do their stamina work and how to bring 'phase'
play into our training techniques. We used most
of their outside facilities for over 2 hours,
including the grids and the goalkeeping training
area - there was plenty of running and ball work
and I picked up lots of tips from Eric. The lads
fully enjoyed the session and are looking forward
to Wednesday when we will be using their indoor
pitch and hydro pool.
Wednesday 18th July.
We had Eric Kinder and Robert Kelly (youth coach)
as our coaches. Half of the lads spent an hour in
the indoor centre with Eric, working on defending,
shooting and general awareness of people around
them. They also used the indoor 40m running track
for speed and agility work. Using the gym we
learnt that basic strength is not enough, Robert
put the lads through a rigorous speed training
session on the equipment to sharpen the reflexes
- 30 second bursts on leg and upper body
apparatus kept everyone on the move for over 35
minutes. Even the manager joined in - still can't
move today (Friday)! Following a warm down in the
hydro pool with stretching exercises, the groups
then swapped over. We all finished off with a few
competitive games in the pool, team swimming
races - the manager was like Flipper and ensured
that his team won all of the games! The 2 hours
passed by in a flash.
Thursday 19th July.
The first team squad were taken out on to one of
the 'bowling green' pitches and worked on
attacking positioning, attacking inside the
penalty area and also defensive responsibilities,
defenders positioning during games. Crossing,
finishing and midfield passing also came into
play in what was an enthralling 2 hours. The
Reserve lads went into the indoor arena with
junior coach Steve Nickson using the full
facilities and finished off with a game. Over the
3 days we had using the fantastic facilities we
used practically all the same training techniques
the Rovers Academy lads use on a daily basis. It
is no wonder that todays footballer is stronger,
fitter and quicker than ever before.
Overall I could see how there is a massive gap
between professional fitness and the semi
professional approach to the game. I'm sure the
players have benefited from their experience and
the work the coaches put us through will benefit
us in the coming season. If anything it has given
me the appetite to explore further the coaching
side to management....the manager has decided
that his future lies in coaching and not playing!
(The broadcasted feature can
be seen by clicking on this link www.skysports.com or
else visit the website - select Football, then
Video, then click on 18 Jul Blackburn 'swap'