First Team

Work begins in Belek

At 14:13 local time, the Hannover party landed in Antalya after a three-and-a-half hour flight, before boarding a bus for a further hour’s journey to the Cornelia Diamond Hotel in Belek. As they arrived, Thomas Schaaf and his team were greeted by rain, but by the time they headed out for their first training session in the evening, the dark clouds had already disappeared. Over the coming six and a half days, Hannover 96 will work towards a hopefully successful second half of the season.

“Much better conditions than in Germany”
Training camps in Turkey are nothing new for Hannover’s new head coach Thomas Schaaf, and the 54-year-old knows the advantages of winter sessions in Belek: “The conditions here have gotten better and better over the years. The temperature here is good, so are the hotels, and the pitches are in perfect working condition.” The wet greeting was not a problem for Schaaf, especially because the temperature was 15°C outside, which is “much better than back in Germany right now.”

Team building on the pitch
The best way for him and the new coaching staff to get to know the team better is definitely to have intense training sessions focusing on different areas. “We will get to know the players through the general work here, even though a week’s training camp is not enough for that.” Already in the first sessions of 2016 back in Hannover, Thomas Schaaf stated that “everyone here is hardworking and willing to get on board.” In any case, the new head coach sees daily work together on the pitch as the best option for developing a new, important self-confidence. There are no other special team-building exercises planned for the stay in Belek. “The team already know each other.” What counts is what happens on the pitch…