Pros An­swer Reader Ques­tions

Hone your vi­su­al­i­sa­tion skills to en­sure that you’re ready for kick-off, says City’s util­ity man

Australian Four Four Two - - CONTENTS - James Mil­ner wears Nike Mag­ista Opus boots, avail­able at nike.com James Mil­ner Manch­ester City’s 53-cap Eng­land in­ter­na­tional

James Mil­ner and Marta give you the ben­e­fit of their pro­fes­sional ex­per­tise

“Ev­ery week I pre­pare prop­erly for my match, but I lose fo­cus on the morn­ing of the game. Is there any­thing I can do to change this?”

Christie Mur­ray, via Twit­ter

“Don’t think about the game con­stantly. It’s im­por­tant to get the bal­ance right. Two days be­fore the game, think about who you’re play­ing against. If you know you’re play­ing at right-back and you’ll be fac­ing some­one like Eden Haz­ard, get his habits in your mind – the sort of runs he makes; which foot he uses. I visu­alise pos­si­ble sit­u­a­tions. For ex­am­ple, if my op­po­nent is al­ways try­ing to get onto his left foot, I’ll try to force him onto his right. If I’m on the left wing, I pic­ture what I’m go­ing to do with the ball – if it’s com­ing at me I might ei­ther try to fling it round the cor­ner first time, or take on the full-back. If vi­su­al­is­ing the game isn’t your thing, you still need a way to get your mind on it. Just make sure you get your sleep the night be­fore. Some play­ers mess around right up un­til kick-off. They get ner­vous, so they switch off un­til it’s time and then – bang! – they’re ready to go.”

Think about who you’ll be fac­ing days ahead of the game

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