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Praise for Van Gaal

FCB upbeat after productive training camp

Ten days ahead of the first competitive match of the season, the DFB Cup first round tie away to sixth-tier Neckarelz, the FCB party concluded the summer training camp in Donaueschingen and set off for Cologne, where Munich face FC Köln on Friday. A charity meeting with the McFit Allstars in Gelsenkirchen follws on Saturday, before the squad returns to Munich in the evening.

"Overall, I reckon we can call it a very, very good pre-season period," director of sport Christian Nerlinger told, reflecting on a positive week in the Black Forest. "Taken as a whole, we're heading in the right direction," continued Nerlinger, explicitly praising the "perfect conditions" at the club's Öschberhof hotel training base.

Impressed players

Captain Mark van Bommel, similarly declaring himself "satisfied with the work we've put in here," issued unmistakeable words of praise for new coach Louis van Gaal and his innovative methods. "He clearly tells us what he wants to see. He's a straight talker, he corrects you and urges you on." Raised voices on the practice ground from time to time was absolutely not a problem, Van Bommel continued. "It's criticism to help you improve. It's well-intentioned, to stop it happening again."