Beautiful sunshine, the first beads of sweat for the new season and plenty of beaming faces on the pitch, but also from the spectators gathered around the training grounds at the Volkswagen Arena. On Sunday, VfL Wolfsburg began their preparations for the 2018/2019 campaign. Wolves head coach Bruno Labbadia welcomed all four summer-signings, Felix Klaus, Pavao Pervan, Wout Weghorst and Daniel Ginczek, as well as the those return from loan spells away from the club - Paul Seguin, Ismail Azzaoui, Marvin Stefaniak and Paul-Georges Ntep. The absentees on Sunday included World Cup participants Koen Casteels and Jakub Blaszczykowski, as well as the ill William, Victor Osimhen, Sebastian Jung and Marcel Tisserand, who are in rehabilitative training as they recover from injury, Nany Landry Dimata and Kaylen Hinds, who will both join in with training this Monday on private grounds.
On the 'Hill', catch and thanks to fans
500 VfL fans greeted the Green-Whites with applause, as they undertook their first laps of the training grounds. Along with some activating exercises, which included a brief work-out on the infamous 'Training-Hill' at the VfL-Center and a variation on the kids game of ‘Catch’, the ball came more into play. Initially there were no goals in play, with the focus on inter-play and possession in two teams, before the goals and goalkeepers were introduced later and both sides then locked horns for a training match. After the session, the fans were then granted access to the pitch, in order to claim some autographs and request photos with the Wolves pros, who naturally took the time to fulfil their wishes.
"Super conditions and fantastic pitches"
Bruno Labbadia was subsequently delighted to have been able to work with the team again and is looking forward to making effective use of the facilities directly at home in the coming weeks: "Over the final three months of last season, not everything went as we had hoped it would - but we are still playing in the Bundesliga. We now go into our preparations eager to face the tasks that await us. Here in Wolfsburg we have super conditions and fantastic pitches. That’s the reason we decided to stay here and work hard for the coming campaign." Until, and including, next Friday, the Wolves will be in action on the training grounds around the Volkswagen Arena every day. On Saturday July 7th, the Green-Whites play their first pre-season test match against the Veltins-Selection (kick-off 14:00 CEST at ‘Sportpark Flutmulde’ in Gifhorn).