U's will go through paces in Germany

COLCHESTER United's forthcoming trip to Germany will be no stroll in the park, and certainly no holiday in the sun.

Lambert promises

no Bonny trip

by Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United's forthcoming trip to Germany will be no stroll in the park, and certainly no holiday in the sun.


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Manager Paul Lambert will be putting his squad through their paces with some gruelling sessions, as he bids to prepare his side for an assault on League One next term.

Lambert criticised some of his squad for lacking fitness towards the end of last season, but there will be no chance of a repeat during his first full season in charge. The U's will be spending a few days at a camp near Bonn, in Germany, during the middle of next month.

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"I want a big work ethic, and for my players to run through walls for this club," insisted Lambert.

"We will have a busy pre-season and I know what it will be like on the training camp in Germany, because I went to one with Wycombe Wanderers, to a place just outside Dortmund.

"In fact, I tried to get that one again, but it was already booked up.

Instead, we have chosen a similar venue which I believe Argentina used for their World Cup campaign (in 2006).

"The environment will be just right for what I want from this week away. It should bring everyone together.

"There will be no chance to go partying. Everyone will be living in everyone else's pockets. The players will be in a completely different environment to what they are used to.

"It won't be like going to Spain, where there's the lifestyle to go with it. Instead, it's predominantly football-based," added Lambert.

Former Scotland and Celtic midfielder Lambert spent a year in Germany as a player, helping Borussia Dortmund to win the UEFA Champions League in 1996-97.

The 39-year-old therefore has strong ties with Germany, and his pre-season preparations with former club Wycombe certainly had the desired impact - the Chairboys reached the League Two play-offs in his last season at the helm (2007-08), having reached the semi-finals of the League Cup a year earlier.

Meanwhile, Lambert remains confident of boosting his squad with some new recruits before pre-season kicks in.

"I am trying to get a few more in, though the club does not have the same finances in the past when they were in the Championship,"

continued Lambert.

"It will probably be a case of recruiting some players through season-long loans, and others through joining us."

Lincoln City's out-of-contract defender, Lee Beevers, remains top of the list of transfer targets. Pat Baldwin and Alan Maybury are both mulling over the offer of new contracts, while winger Mark Yeates and centre-half Chris Coyne look the most likely to be departing this summer.

Yeates has been the subject of strong interest from Middlesbrough and Bristol City, who both seem prepeared to spend at least �300,000 to secure the ex-Tottenham man, while club captain Coyne has already expressed a wish to move on.

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