The week the three Lions came to town.
On Monday the 1st of October at 3.30pm the England bandwagon rolled into our soccer academy, as the coach with the famous three lions plastered across it, came to a stand still and a number of stars appeared, myself and my other Groundsmen knew we were going to be in for a tough week.
Looking after the likes of David Platt as manager and an array of young stars, the best the country has to offer was going to be a challenge to say the least.
The weekly weather forecast for the week wasn't that rosy either, with heavy showers and the occasional torrential downpour on the cards.
The reaction from the players as they were greeted and welcomed was really pleasing as they were most impressed with what we at Blackburn Rovers had to offer. Three out of the six pitches were allocated to be used by the U21 England squad. That same afternoon the training started on pitch no.2. Following the session my staff and I had a walk down the pitch in a line to knock back any damage that had been done. To be fair there was very little surface damage, where the goalkeeping coach had done a strenuous workout with three or four keepers the turf still looked superb.
The England team then continued to train twice a day for the rest of the week in some horrendous weather conditions. On the Wednesday afternoon they also managed to play a competitive game on our main match pitch at the academy in which I'm pleased to report a victory for our u19s, that of course was a real boost for the Rovers youngsters, a victory against England.
All week was spent divoting, cutting, marking out, and with the Vertidrain machine never too far away we managed to cater for the England squad. All of this along with the week's preparation for the main highlight of our week taking place on Friday evening at Ewood. England U21's verses Greece U21's. I will let you all know how we managed the training session on the Thursday evening, and how the night itself went on Friday.
All the best for now, Steve Patrick B.R.F.C.