Behind the scenes: Let the sun shine
- 30 September 2011 14:31
- Posted by David Clayton/Pics: Sharon Latham
If there's one thing guaranteed to put a smile on the players' faces at Carrington, it's that rarest of things in these parts - a sunny day.
Gael Clichy was the first to spot it as he went out early for a few sprints ahead of the rest of the squad. "What is that yellow ball in the sky...?" he asked in more than passable English. "And eez 'ot, too," he added in a stereotypical French accent (ahem!).
Meanwhile, in the players' canteen Sergio Aguero emerges having watched the weather forecast for the next few days. "Dust off the Factor 50, boys," he said. "It's like Buenos Aires out there..."
Samir Nasri gives a good impression of a man heading out into a Siberian blizzard as he comes out for the warm-up.
"I'll look after you, sunshine," says Yaya.
The stampede for the autumnal heatwave was so fierce, at one point the staircase seemed to be shaking off its hinges. Fortunately, Kolo Toure was on hand to steady them as the last two finally left the building...
OK, enough sun-related links, already! Here, Pablo Zabaleta has just discovered he's marking David Silva, Mario Balotelli and Aguero in a small-sided game. "I'll take you all," warns Zaba. His team-mates seem to think they'll have the edge.
What is nice to see is, while the world watches the Club and some outsiders might even wish to paint a squad who are unhappy and sullen, these pictures show how they really feel - contended and ready to put a rough week behind them by getting back to business against Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.
And the gaffer was right in the middle of it - literally, as Jamie Redknapp might say. So, what have we learned from Friday's training pictures? Well, everything looks fine down at the ranch and three points tomorrow and everyone can move forward again - while maybe setting a new record for the Blues' best-ever start to a season...
Now that would be a happy ending.