Lots of desire within new environment
A new infrastructure for Mainz's first-team - Schwarz: "We want to pick up right where we left off."
The ball is rolling again amongst the players in Mainz, with a few missing on international duty. However, that doesn’t change anything in terms of commitment and eagerness from the Zerofivers, who were practicing on Sunday in preparation for the new Bundesliga season, despite blistering heats. “We’ve very happy,” said Sandro Schwarz after the opening training. “We’ve had six weeks off and now we are looking forward to getting back into it and seeing each other every day from now on.”
The Mainz coach seemed relaxed and well-rested, appearing in high spirits during his first media session since the team returned. “We have already made some changes in terms of infrastructure,” said the 40-year-old. “We’ve changed the breakfast room at the club, renewed certain equipment in the athletic area and created a newly-designed dining room for the pros,” said Schwarz, adding with a laugh, “Some of those who have been here for a while asked if they were suddenly at a new club.”
Emphasis on attacking play and chain reactions
And the lads are going to get down to it right from the beginning. “We want to pick up where we left off,” said Schwarz. In other words, the coach wants his players playing the same way the team did at the end of last season. The coach doesn’t want to waste time and wants to quickly regain the idea that every day in training should be used to improve. “First individually then as a team.”
The fact that a few players are still missing after the international break isn’t too bad. The players who have been on international duty already know the principles and values the club stands for. The start of pre-season gives the younger talents and the new signings a chance to give a good first impression, to look around Mainz and to get to know the exercises and the club values. “This will help ensure the period of settling into the club goes smoothly and we can start the season in the best way possible,” stressed Schwarz.
The emphasis of this week in training is attacking play: “We have three friendlies before next Saturday and we will see how much possession we will have in each of those matches,” said Schwarz. Mainz’s first friendly of the summer is against the FuPa Allstars Rheinhessen before further matches away against Sportfreunden Eisbachtal and SV Gonsenheim. “The matches will help us with our pre-season preparations,” said Schwarz. At the end of the 2018/19 season, the Zerofivers showed that the team can create a lot of chances in front of goal, “If we do the correct things in our build-up play. It doesn’t matter whether this comes from us winning the ball or from good possession,” said the Mainz head coach. The other key topic for the pre-season is the work of the defence to clear their lines at the last moment. Sandro Schwarz’s side return to training action at 10:00 CEST on Monday morning.