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#HungarySpirietes - Tour Diary: Day 2

10 July 2016

Sunday's been no day of rest for the Spireites, with the hardest day of the fledgling pre-season so far. Here's a taste of it all, direct from Hungary.

Breakfast at 8am and the squad were looking a bit more relaxed after a good night's sleep.

With the temperature already well past 20 degrees all the squad were kitted out in training shorts and t-shirts, until the final pair of Spireites wandered in, with room-mates Kristian Dennis and Jon Nolan wrapped up in the thickest of PUMA hoodies: "We accidentally left the air con on overnight" explained the Merseysider to the massed confused faces.

First up for what always promised to be a tough first full day, Mal Purchase got out those big rubber bands and spent 30 minutes in the sports hall stretching the lads' legs, cores and other bits not really worth thinking about (let alone thinking about stretching).

Newly limber and lithe and it was out onto one of the three beautiful full-size pitches. Thoughts of getting ball out straight away were quickly put to one side as Mal had the hurdles and poles out ready and there was more fitness work to be done. I was tired, and I'd only been watching.

A contented Mal finally let Morgs take over and it was into quarter pitch matches, 7 v 7. The small matches give each player more touches and more movement, with few stoppages and balls fed in instantly by the 'keepers whenever a ball left the pitch.

It's hard not to be looking out for which players are looking especially at it, as well as how well the new signings are settling in, and opening looks seem very encouraging. Ched Evans looked sharp as a pin, spinning and shooting with one touch before receiving again, getting the ball out of his feet and rifling into the net in less time than it took to read this sentence.

Lunchtime and the story of dab-hand Dan Jones in the complex's sauna was retold. Apparently, he knew just what he was doing in the Finnish sauna last night, poured the water over the boiling rocks - and filled the room with so much steam that the formerly relaxing players all had to get out coughing and spluttering.

A gym session in the afternoon was followed by a few members of the squad borrowing bikes and heading into the countryside, with comments of the unexpected hilliness coming back with them.

Two and a half hours after the gym session and the squad were back out on the pitch with the gaffer leading the squad in a match-based training session, giving instructions on where each player should be in different in-game scenarios.

At 7pm the day's training had come to an end, but while some players headed in for a recovery swim plenty of others were still out practicing ballwork, with the gaffer having to tell them to go in and rest their legs: "There'll be plenty more tomorrow" was the ominous instruction.

Attention has now turned to football, but not our own this time, with worries surfacing over where to watch the Euro 2016 final tonight. The receptionist assures us that all will be fine and it will be live in a conference room, you'll hear the groans from back home if they don't come through with this promise.

More tomorrow.

Iain Pearce - Spireites Media Team

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