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JC: Keep in shape!

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Pittodrie players prepare for new campaign as calderwood’s fitness regime starts this weekend

Aberdeen’s Mair prepared to work for first-team place


By Paul Smith


Published: 13/06/2008


Aberdeen defender Lee Mair will begin work tomorrow as he bids to establish himself as a key man for the Dons.


Mair and his Pittodrie colleagues will launch into their individual fitness programmes this weekend, designed to lay the foundations for pre-season training when the squad gathers on June 30.


Mair believes the schedule will play a vital role in his aim of improving on the 18 starts he made last season.


He said: “We all received the manager’s schedule to keep fit during the summer and it starts this weekend.


“You know that if you come back for pre-season training overweight or out of shape, you won’t play.


“I’m not a naturally fit person. I’ve got to look after myself all the time and I’ve always done that by going to the gym and running regularly.


“It’s a matter of professional pride for me and I’m looking forward to his programme. It doesn’t bother me at all to do extra work which involves a lot of running and building it up as the weeks go on.


“It will ensure we come back as fit as we can and we’ll all benefit from it because we know pre-season will be tough.


“The manager is big on fitness and I believe Aberdeen were one of the fittest sides in the country last season.â€


Mair knows better than most a good pre-season is no guarantee the campaign will go to plan.


Last year, his first with the club following his switch from Dundee United, he suffered a knee injury in the second game of the SPL season and was sidelined for more than a month.


It was a stop-start season after that and Mair is desperate to make up for lost time.


He said: “It was frustrating for me. I had a brilliant pre-season and felt fitter than I’d done for years. I was in the team at the start then picked up an injury which kept me out for five weeks. After I recovered, there were a few niggles and I never felt as good again.


“It was a roller-coaster season – from the highs of Bayern Munich and the Scottish Cup win against Celtic to the lows of the two cup semi-final defeats.


“It wasn’t a bad campaign but we are looking for much better this time round. We finished very strongly over the last five matches and are looking to kick on now.


“These are exciting times at the club and the players set to come in can only be good for the future. Everyone will be looking over their shoulder and that will spur us all on.â€


The article in the metro this morning was far more blunt, keep fit over the next month or you are not getting a game.

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Bollocks. Yes he should be setting an example by turning up to work on time. Or by not turning up pissed, like some of our previous managers. But it's not the job of managers to run after the players ... that's the jobs of the coaches and trainers. Yes the CAPTAIN should set an example to the rest of the players, in terms of physical effort and input to the entire running of the first team. But the manager? Nah. I couldnae gie a shite that JC is a lump of lard.


Gone are the days at Aberdeen where managers like Ally MacLeod would join in with the team training sessions. Jimmy is the Aberdeen MANAGER. He's not the Aberdeen fitness coach. He's in charge of MANAGING the team ... and the team includes the fitness coaches etc.


I work for an ISP in New Zealand. My boss is an absolute novice with a computer. But he knows his shit and does a phenomenal job. He leaves the technical stuff to the people who get paid to know their technical stuff. It's exactly the same in football. Just because JC is the team manager, doesn't mean he has to lead by example and be as fit as a fiddle and run around leading the team a merry dance!

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