Tuchel hails Mount after first Chelsea hat-trick
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Jose Mourinho won over Chelsea’s players during his first spell in charge by making a drastic change to the club’s pre-season training schedule. Footballers often detest the gruelling nature of pre-season training where managers put players through their paces to get them up to speed for the upcoming season.
But instead of opting for the more traditional approach to pre-season, which focuses mainly on running and fitness drills, the former Chelsea boss introduced footballs into the drills, long before the players would have expected Mourinho to re-introduce them into training.
As a result, players got back to full fitness by using the football, rather than performing mind-numbing fitness drills without it.
“Jose Mourinho is one of the biggest and best managers I’ve worked under, because of the way he trained, but also because of the way he handled the dressing room,” said Geremi, speaking exclusively to Ladbrokes at its launch of the 5-A-Side Bet on Newcastle v Chelsea’.
“In big clubs you have big players with big egos, and Mourinho is exactly the type of person who can manage these clubs.
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“I was very impressed with the way Jose Mourinho trained us, right from day one.
“I think back to one pre-season where we came back from our holidays, and any player will tell you the worst part of football training is the amount of running we have to do during pre-season.
“Mourinho acknowledged this very early on, and was clever enough to recognise that all we wanted to do was play with footballs.
“So he introduced balls into pre-season training earlier than we were used to.
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“None of us enjoyed running without the ball, and because Mourinho knew that, he built his exercises around running with the ball, and we loved it.
“Ask any of the players in the club at the time, we loved it, because we were playing with the ball for so long.
“And before we knew it, at the end of the day, we’d have covered so much ground and improved our fitness so much, but it didn’t feel like punishment – which is what pre-season often reminds you of.
Geremi joined Chelsea in 2003 from Real Madrid and played for three seasons under the Portuguese manager, before departing for Newcastle in 2007.
The former right-back called time on his playing 2011 following a spell in Greece with AEL.
Geremi was also capped 118 times by Cameroon, making him the second-highest appearance maker in the countries footballing history, alongside Barcelona legend Samuel Eto’o.
Chelsea progressed to the quarter-final of the EFL Cup on Tuesday after they beat Southampton 4-3 on penalties, following a 1-1 draw after extra time.
Thomas Tuchel’s side will travel to St James’ Park to face Newcastle in the Premier League on Saturday.
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