People see training in different ways – some positive, some negative. For me, it’s never been a problem. If anything I’ve been criticised for doing too much. Again, it’s the obsessive nature. I’ve got an intrinsic dedication to learn and continually improve, so I see the training ground as an opportunity.
I want to use every moment when I’m out there whether training as a team or individually. Every run, kick, pass, or communication should hold meaning. You should aim in every scenario to replicate that match situation.
Essentially you should be training to be the player you want to be. If you want to be the best you can be week in, week out, then you have to train to that level at every possible moment.
That’s not to say that training can’t be fun, it has to stay engaging and varied. I’ll train all facets of my game throughout a session – even when kicking. Run or side step to collect the balls, pass them back to your mark – use every opportunity.
When margins of defeat and victory are so tight, you can’t afford to leave anything to chance. Training won’t always ensure victory, but it should at least give you peace of mind that you’ve done all that you can.