Wednesday, June 10, 2009

First Time at Pilditch

The team got their first look at the training venue today with a visit to Pilditch Stadium in Pretoria. About 30 minutes drive, the stadium is primarily used for track and field. There is a grandstand on one side, with a grassy berm surrounding the other three. The pitch is in pretty good condition, with members of the grounds crew working all morning to address the team needs after a site inspection by the coaching staff.

U.S. head coach Bob Bradley put the team through the paces for a little more than an hour, hoping to break a sweat and get the travel out of their legs. As expected, security at the stadium was heavy, and there were many curious onlookers in the otherwise empty seats. Press from as far apart as Australia and New York got their first shot at interviews, and the international press were once again pleasantly surprised by the access and openness of the players.

The group is back on the field tomorrow for a 3 p.m. session that is open to the general public. U.S. Soccer and the State Department are hosting about 300 kids from various local charities for the event. We'll have photos and video tomorrow from what should be a very special day.

We managed to sneak a couple of photos from today's cold and wet training session through the hamster wheel ..

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