As predicted, the weather changed on Saturday 8 January. Clear blue skies and temperatures over 20 degrees were replaced by rain at under 15 degrees. It was particularly heavy at the end of the morning session. While most of the players had finished training, with tactics and ball skills to the fore, Lars Bender was still working on his own when the weather took a turn for the worse. A clap of thunder shook the training ground at the ChampionsGate Sport Complex. While Ömer Toprak had to break off his interview with Bayer 04 TV, our skipper raced for cover under the canopy of the building where the Werkself training gear is stored.
Recovery in the hotel
As a result of the bad weather, head coach Roger Schmidt decided to move the afternoon recovery session from the training ground into the hotel. That was disappointing for the many fans who wanted to watch the second session on Saturday but the right decision in terms of the players’ health and safety.
Black and Red media work
While the storm raged outside, there were a number of media events planned before and after lunch. Stefan Kießling was interviewed by Kicker, Chicharito by beIN Sports, Kevin Volland fielded questions from the BILD newspaper, Benjamin Henrichs spoke to the Rheinische Post and Kevin Kampl was on Sky Sport News HD with the Kölner Stadt Anzeiger.
Jonathan Tah was with the DFL media team and he praised the facilities at the training camp in his interview. “You can walk to the training ground and it’s in good condition, the food is great and we feel at home here in the hotel. And even though we’re working really hard, it’s still fun,” said ‘Jona’ who is sharing an apartment with Danny da Costa and Bernd Leno. He took his time to answer the question about who is the quietest of the three. “Perhaps Danny… Although I can be really quiet too.”
Call from Löw
The central defender was already in Florida when the squad landed in Orlando on 3 January. He spent the time over the new year in Miami. And that meant he caught up on the holiday he missed in the summer of 2016. Tah was in the Sunshine State when the Germany coach Joachim Löw called him up to replace the injured Antonio Rüdiger. “I like the USA. The people are open and cool. Nobody gives you strange looks if go round in funny clothes. And I really like the climate.”
Photo with Demel and Sanogo
In response to a question about his first experience of the Bundesliga, the Hamburg-born footballer recounted a story from his younger days. He must have been seven or eight when he went to an event at the Stadtpark in Hamburg. HSV pros were signing autographs and the young Jonathan wanted to have his photo taken with Guy Demel and Boubacar Sanogo. “But I stood there in front of them I was too shy and I wanted to run away. My mum gave me a shove and the photo was taken.”
On the subject of photos: Jonathan Tah took over the Bayer 04 Snapchat account at the training camp in Kaprun/Zell am See. The central defender has done the same in Orlando. Together with his ‘brother’ Benjamin Henrichs, Tah spent all of Saturday posting photos and videos of the Werkself. The story is on Snapchat for a few hours. Don’t miss it. The pair had loads of fun.
New arrival for the Baumgartlingers
The Baumgartlinger family now has three members. Mother Laura gave birth to a girl on Saturday 7 January. Mother and daughter are doing well and, as agreed with the coach and the club, that allowed Julian to fly from Frankfurt to Orlando on Sunday morning. The new father is expected to arrive at the team hotel on Sunday night and could be on the training ground on Monday. And the sun is due to return by then with temperatures of 20 degrees plus.
You can keep up-to-date with events in Florida round-the-clock via our hashtag#B04goesUSA. Just log on to Twitter,Facebook,Instagram and Snapchat (@bayer04snaps). Information on the Werkself training camp is available here in German, English and Spanish: >> http://www.bayer04.de/goesUSA <<.
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