Stamford Bridge on a match-free Wednesday at this stage of the season is usually a pretty quiet place apart from the regular stream of groups being shown around the popular stadium tour route. Today was different.
For one special training session Frank Lampard and his players swapped their usual base at Cobham for our home stadium, and fans had been invited too.The 5,000 free tickets which were originally available for the event had been quickly snapped up and the West Stand lower tier began to fill up early on a sunny morning in west London. With UK school summer holidays in full swing, it was no surprise to see many young faces in the crowd.Lampard himself was out from the tunnel before the open training session began in order to introduce it. The boss explained how important he believes such events are in providing a chance for players to be able to engage with the fans and said that with a full week available to prepare for the visit to Norwich on Saturday, there is plenty of hard work taking place. He detailed what type of training was about to be seen.Callum Hudson-Odoi, who returned to training with the squad yesterday as he nears the end of his rehab from an Achilles injury, was again involved in the full session and also joining the main squad today were youngsters Tariq Lamptey and Marc Guehi.
Following the initial warm-up exercises, there was a noisy round of keep-ball, piggy-in-the-middle style competition, the players split into two groups before some shooting drills, with Lampard joining his coaches in delivering the ammunition from out wide for a variety of finishes from the players in front of goal. And how the fans enjoyed watching those skills in action judging by the applause when that activity ended!Then it was time for two sides to take each other on in a match situation on a three-quarter-sized pitch, before some more finishing practice ended the session.
The entertainment for the fans present had begun much earlier, before the players arrived on the pitch, with Chelsea TV’s Lee Parker hosting and joined by presenters Wolfy and Rachel Stringer who are known to many of our Bridge Kids. There were football freestylers showing off their skills, shirt giveaways and plenty more fun for the families.Two Chelsea legends who are now important members of staff were also interviewed on the pitch before training began, with Tore Andre Flo talking about his current role with loan players and Petr Cech stating how pleased they are with the application shown by the Chelsea players so far as a new era at the club begins.It was application much in evidence on the Stamford Bridge pitch once the training session began.