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Neal seeks fitness edge

10 July 2015

Last night's event on Dons Player

It was a Meet The Manager event with a difference this year as Neal Ardley provided an insight into tactics and fitness techniques for supporters who attended.

For Dons Player subscribers who did not attend the event, we recorded 20 minutes of footage from last night and this is now available on our premium channel.

Neal made a presentation focusing on the coaching staff’s use of GPS equipment – a fitness tool used by Premier League clubs – to evaluate and monitor players. First-team coach Simon Bassey and Neal also took part in a Q & A with supporters, before the manager got out the tactics board to talk through possible formations for next season.

At half-time of the Q & A, AFC Wimbledon’s new third kit for 2015/16 was unveiled and this can be viewed by clicking the button underneath our main picture.

Speaking last night at Meet the Manager, Neal said: “We have managed to borrow GPS equipment for pre-season, which a lot of Premier League clubs have got. It is £50,000 worth of equipment and it is fantastic. Sometimes you hear managers talking in pre-season about double sessions or training at an army camp. We like to do things differently with a more modern approach.

“You may have heard our players saying that they do all their training with the balls. They do some running, but it is all done with the balls. This equipment does justice to what we do. The GPS system takes every metre the players cover from the moment they start training and also how many intense sprints that they do. It records every metre that they cover on the training pitch.

“At the end you find out how long they have been training and the distance they have covered. One player managed to finish training on Tuesday having completed over 10 km and that was Callum Kennedy. He was closely followed by Jake Reeves. It’s great for us to use and the players have started asking for their statistics.”

Neal also talked transfer targets including looking for another striker and he explained why a 3-4-3 formation could be a good option for next season with more chances created during the final games of last season.

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