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Sporting Charleroi players return to training

Sporting Charleroi players return to training

After physical tests, the Zebras took part in their first open training session on Wednesday.

Rik De Mil was all smiles as he reunited with his players on the Marcinelle training ground on Wednesday morning. Before starting this hour-long session, he presented his two new players to the group: goalkeeper Théo Defourny and left-back Mardochée Nzita, trained at Anderlecht, who went through Italy before becoming D1B champion with Beerschot.

“I am very satisfied with these two players,” the Sporting coach tells us on the sidelines. “They are boys with quality. They also have a good mentality. There is quality in the team and there already was. Now we have to create that team spirit to surpass ourselves. To achieve something that makes us proud.”

The two newcomers walked through the guard of honour formed by their teammates, receiving the traditional “slaps” as a welcome. Then the twenty-two Zebras were divided into three groups, to carry out five workshops. Two were based on passing games, with a lot of seriousness and concentration. Two others were more physical, to work on dynamism and strength training, supervised by Rudger Van Snick, the new “head of performance”, presented on Tuesday. And a “foot-tennis”, much more relaxed, with a Frank Defays forced to give a hand to Dragsnes, Bernier and Zorgane, still Carolo to this day.

“We had physical tests on Tuesday, which were very good,” explains Rik De Mil. “The base is there, now we have to continue this work for almost six weeks, before the championship. This Tuesday was a very tough day, it’s normal to have a recovery moment on Wednesday. We have to work hard, but with a smile.” The coach was hilarious as he watched Isaac Mbenza and Jérémy Petris pushing hard to win the foot-tennis game, in front of only a dozen supporters.

At this stage of the preparation, it was just a detail but there was no central defender present at Marcinelle. “That’s normal, since five players are back with their national team. I’ve experienced that every year at Club Bruges. I see it as an opportunity for the young players, who have the chance to integrate into the team. Next week, three central defenders will return, not forgetting the transfers. So there will be solutions,” smiles Rik De Mil.

Written by Angel Chioma

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