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Gearing up for Gladbach

Full focus on Friday's restart clash

The second half of the season is looming large on the horizon and FCB have moved into the final stages of preparation for the rest of the 2013/14 campaign. After two days without official training – although many of the players reported to the Säbener Strasse on both Sunday and Monday in any case – Pep Guardiola summoned his men to the practice ground on Tuesday morning for a first squad session of the day. Three days remain until the Bundesliga restart fixture away to Mönchengladbach on Friday evening, “and we’re concentrating even harder,” Mario Götze stated.

Speaking to the Germany international said he was “feeling good” after the first two -and-a-half-weeks of the mid-season training period. “And I think the team is in good shape as well. We’re really looking forward to getting going again.“ The player said he was grateful for a couple of days off, but it was now time to start the fine-tuning process in training. “And then we’ll fly to Gladbach and see if we can put it all into practice,“ Götze declared.

Starting again from scratch

The champions will need to be in very good shape against the side lying third in the table, as everyone at the club knows. The friendly defeat away to Salzburg was in many ways a welcome shot across the bows. “We’ll need to be totally focused and motivated right from the start,” Karl-Heinz Rummenigge admonished on Sunday on his visit to the Red Power Taufkirchen fan club, “we have to earn it all over again in 2014. As of New Year’s Day we started all over again from scratch.“

The selection and availability situation remained unchanged at Tuesday’s first training session. Philipp Lahm, Daniel van Buyten and Alessandro Schöpf reported to fitness coach Andreas Kornmayer on a pitch adjacent to the squad session, although the trio also spent plenty of time on the ball. Arjen Robben, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javi Martínez pursued individual training plans in the Performance Center, but Franck Ribéry resumed the squad programme after sitting out the friendly in Salzburg.