RB Leipzig were away at winter training camp in the United Arab Emirates from 2nd to 11th January. The team used the nine days to get in great shape for the second half of the season.
We provide you with daily updates from the camp below.
Training camp day by day
Before boarding the plane back home, the team went through a recovery session in the morning at the training ground at the hotel. After a nearly seven-hour flight, the players will meet at Cottaweg on Friday in order to prepare for their final friendly of the winter break on Saturday, 11th January against Czech first-tier side, FK Mlada Boleslav (14:00 CET).
The final day of training camp in Abu Dhabi featured another friendly for the Red Bulls. The team held a training session behind closed doors in the morning in order to work on set pieces.
The evening's friendly saw RBL win 15-0 against a selection of players from regional teams and second-division side Atletico Arabia FC.
The team were rewarded for their efforts with a day off on Thursday in order to relax.
The entire squad made their way out onto the training pitch on Monday morning once again. Our fitness coach led the warm-up before the tempo increased somewhat once the group was split into three groups for a rondo. Head coach Marco Rose then brought everyone together to work on patterns of play, which was an even more intense part of the session. Our second friendly of the training camp is coming up on Tuesday evening.
Max Eberl, RBL sporting director, welcomed Oliver Mintzlaff to the training ground this morning. Mintzlaff used the opportunity to get another glimpse at how things are going at RBL.
A day after linking up with the squad, Josko Gvardiol was straight back on the training pitch. After a warm-up with his teammates on the bike, the 20-year-old took part in individual training. With his first run on the pitch and exercises on the ball, his focus was on getting used to the feel of the pitch again having been on holiday. The rest of the team was focussed on loosening up after the game the day before.
After his first training session, Josko answered questions for the assembled journalists and spoke exclusively in an interview with us, and the video will soon be available on YouTube.
On Saturday morning, the boys warmed up ahead of an evening friendly against Eintracht Frankfurt. Kick-off against the Bundesliga's fourth placed side was shortly before 17:00, and you can read the match report here.
World Cup semi-finalist Josko Gvardiol joined up with the squad in the evening. The Croatia international was greeted by the team after dinner to warm applause..
Friday began with sprints for our boys, before moving into a training game of 11 vs. 11. While the outfield players were given time to stretch afterwards, goalkeeping coach Freddy Gößling took to the pitch to work on crosses with our goalkeepers. Max Eberl, our sporting director, was responsible for sending in the crosses. Our goalkeepers were excited to see that Max still has what it takes, even now!
The team were given free choice of how to train in the afternoon, with some heading to the gym and others kicking a ball around on the training ground.
Timo Werner completed parts of team training this morning for the first time since suffering a syndesmosis ligament tear in his left ankle.
A regenerative session was in store for the Red Bulls on Thursday. A stretching session was followed with some work on the bikes.
After some intense work in previous days, Marco Rose’s side were given the afternoon off; they’ll get back to business tomorrow. While some of the team cooled off in the water, Timo Werner and Konni Laimer headed to the beach volleyball net in search of worthy opposition.
Sweaty: That’s one word to describe the first session on Wednesday afternoon. The midday sun was a powerful one, blasting out at almost 30 degrees in Abu Dhabi. The boys really had to work tirelessly. Marco Rose ordered his troops around the hotel training ground for about two and a half hours. It was all intense battles, individual runs with the ball, again and again and again – until, finally, the long-awaited lunch break called. The motto for the third day has been the same as the other two: work hard!
The evening’s session was a much lighter one. Players enjoyed themselves and there was a lot of ear-flicking going on at the rondo drills.
Kevin Kampl, Dani Olmo and Willi Orban took to the cycling machines in the pitchside gym tent.
The sun rises on our first full day in Abu Dhabi. On the agenda for today? Hard work.
Our lads began the day with a weights session in the hotel gym at 11:00 CET, before a running session at the training ground. Anyone who still had energy left after the morning will have been pushed to the limits later that day. After a 30-minute team talk, the squad trained for 90 minutes out on the pitch. The session included intense repetition of different plays, as well as our first game of 11 vs. 11. Afterwards, there was time for a quick shower and some recovery work in preparation for another full day tomorrow.
The evening also featured a media round with Willi Orban on the sidelines of the training pitch. Read our article on what our rock at the back had to say here.
At 11:00 CET, a charter flight took off from Leipzig Airport to transport RBL to Abu Dhabi. The plane was unfortunately absent of Péter Gulácsi, top scorer Christo Nkunku and young goalkeeper Timo Schlieck due to injury – however, record goalscorer Timo Werner was back among the travelling party.
A good six hours later the boys landed in Abu Dhabi, with temperatures on the ground of just over 21 degrees. Including the three hour time difference, as well as the journey to the hotel, it was already 23:00 local time by the time the team was greeted by Marco Rose for the first training session at the hotel training pitch. It was immediately clear from the first instructions on the pitch from the coach that the team is not here for fun. Instead, there is full focus on preparing for the rest of the season as best as possible. Running, activation work and the first training with the ball followed. After almost an hour it was then time for the team to return to the hotel. But now full focus turns to the coming days.
Training camp in pictures: Days 6 to 10
Training camp in pictures: Days 1 to 5
Our training-camp squad
• Janis Blaswich
• Ørjan Nyland
• Jonas Nickisch
• Oskar Preil
• Mohamed Simakan
• Willi Orban
• Lukas Klostermann
• David Raum
• Marcel Halstenberg
• Sanoussy Ba
• Abdou Diallo
• Joško Gvardiol (from 8th January)
• Benjamin Henrichs
• Dani Olmo
• Amadou Haidara
• Emil Forsberg
• Dominik Szoboszlai
• Xaver Schlager
• Konrad Laimer
• Kevin Kampl
• Yussuf Poulsen
• Timo Werner
• André Silva
• Max Voigt
• Ohene Köhl
• Daniel Ihendu
• Aris Bayindir
• Chilohem Onuoha
• Yannick Eduardo
Friday 01/27/23, 07.30 p.m.
1 : 0
Round of 16
Wednesday 02/01/23, 05.00 p.m.
Saturday 02/04/23, 02.30 p.m.
1. FC Köln
Saturday 02/11/23, 05.30 p.m.
Saturday 02/18/23, 02.30 p.m.