Edin Terzic spoke of a “very special day” as the newly installed Borussia Dortmund head coach led his first training session in preparation for the upcoming 2022/23 campaign.
Some of Dortmund’s squad had undergone the obligatory performance tests and diagnostics on Monday and Tuesday, but on Wednesday they were out on the training pitch with a ball at their feet for the first time, much to the delight of the 1,300 fans in attendance.
Mats Hummels, Yousoufa Moukoko and Marius Wolf were among them, although several stars were still absent either through injury or extended holiday after featuring for their national teams in early June.
Nevertheless, for Terzic it was a happy occasion as he resumed the role he had filled on an interim basis at the end of the 2020/21 season – leading the team to DFB Cup glory, no less.
“After my time as caretaker ended, I said that I could see myself being a coach again one day,” he said to the media after training had concluded. “But it was still a bit of a surprise that it was to be at Dortmund again, and in 2022. Everything happened very quickly.
“We’ve been here since Monday but I’ve had a lot of conversations with the players for the past month or so. It’s great when you can finally be out on the pitch again, when you’ve take care of the preparatory things and you can feel the ball and the grass.”
Seven first-team members were among the 19 footballers put through their paces, with the rest made up of reserve-team and youth players. Emre Can and Felix Passlack worked individually, with the rest of the senior pros due back on 9 July.
Watch: Terzic's first game as Dortmund coach in 2020/21
“It felt good, it was a very special day for me,” Terzic continued. “We want to make the fans happy, and do so increasingly regularly – if possible in a three-day rhythm [due to midweek matches]. And maybe at some point we can celebrate winning the big prize [of the Bundesliga title].”
Before he can get his hands on any silverware again, however, the 39-year-old is well aware that he and his charges need to put in the hard yards first: “We need to create a foundation and we also need to work on a lot of things. We’ve got plenty of work to do.
“We want to see good football, and there are many ways to get there. I’ve always insisted that football is a player’s game. We’ll try to get the maximum out of the boys, bring their strengths out on the pitch and hide any weaknesses, if needs be. We want to be able to be prepared for anything that can happen in a match.”
Dortmund have a number of friendlies lined up in July, including headline outings against Spanish duo Valencia and Villarreal, before their first competitive game of the season away to 1860 Munich in the first round of the DFB Cup.
They begin their Bundesliga campaign at home to Bayer Leverkusen on the first weekend in August.
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