Four days after Germany manager Hansi Flick announced his squad for the June international break, pictures of Thomas Müller and his teammates arriving in style at ‘The Westin La Quinta Golf Resort & Spa’ surfaced on social media.
Whereas Gareth Southgate’s England will not begin their 2022 UEFA Nations League preparations before 30th May, former Bayern Munich boss Flick invited his players a week earlier and decided to hold a five-day summer camp at Spain’s Marbella Football Center.
What role does this training programme play in Germany’s FIFA World Cup aspirations? What is the daily schedule for the players? Let’s take a look:
Reviving an old tradition
Flick has taken a ‘Klinsmann-style’ approach to preparing for next month’s extensive Nations League tour as well as the Qatar World Cup. Back in 2006, former Bundestrainer Jürgen Klinsmann took his squad to Sardinia for a similar five-day regeneration camp before the World Cup. The players were allowed to bring their families and apart from a couple of training sessions per day, captain Michael Ballack and co. were given time to relax and engage in team-building exercises at the ‘Hotel Forte Village’.
“It’s a tradition at the DFB to do a kind of regeneration training camp together,” recalled Flick (Sz). “I’ve also been through this one or two times.”
Bonus preparation time for World Cup
The Marbella camp is important for a couple of reasons.
A week of rest and recuperation will allow players to enjoy a break after a hectic season at club level, before they head back to Germany and take part in intensive training for the Nations League. “After two weeks off, to say we’re meeting four days before the Nations League games and then suddenly the players are supposed to perform, that wouldn’t be serious, that wouldn’t be professional,” said Flick.
“Some players played their last game a week ago or even earlier. We have an ambitious program in June with four games within two weeks. It’s about making sure we have a responsible transition mentally and physically between Nations League and the season,” the 57-year old explained (Sport1).
Moreover, Flick was also able to squeeze in an extra week of training before the World Cup. Due to congested scheduling, national team managers will not be afforded a month-long time with players to establish a clear game plan before heading to Qatar at the end of the year. The upcoming matches against Italy and England will offer Flick the perfect opportunity to try out different lineup combinations and test his squad against two of the best teams in Europe.
“We know that we only have a short time until the World Cup and that’s why we’re happy to have the chance to train with the team,” Flick added.
DFB is reportedly working on organizing a similar rehabilitation camp in Dubai before the German squad departs for Qatar.
Just as in 2006, the German national team will participate in focused workout drills and tactics discussions in the morning. The players have been accompanied by their family members and will get to enjoy some downtime after lunch.
“There are some families with us and I am happy that we will be one big family for the next five days,” says grandpa Flick. “I know that for many it is important to spend time with the family before and after the training sessions. When you meet your kids after a hard workout, you are relaxed right away. It will be like this: we will train in the morning and after lunch we will have free time.”
Per Bild, the players will also be allowed two night-outs.