Day three in Beijing and it was a busy one...
With an ICC official training session first up on the agenda, the players travelled across the Olympic Park to the sports centre for a morning session in front of a group of invited guests.
There may have only been a thousand of them but they certainly made their love for City known from the moment the players got off the bus, all the way through a light, entertaining session which climaxed with the ever-popular shooting practice.
We got in and amongst the supporters and we were blown away by their depth of knowledge on all things MCFC.
As each and every player came out individually, they were given warm ovations with the fans shouting their names as they identified them – and I mean, everyone! From the younger lads like Manu Garcia and Sinan Bytyqi through to Messrs Aguero and Toure.
Even though the EDS matches take place in a different timezone thousands of miles away - as you can see above, one fan had a “Celina 59” shirt and another was holding a Cameron Humphreys poster.
One supporter gave us a sketch of Sergio she’d spent 40 hours in and we were happy to pass it along to Kun later on – safe to say, he was pleased with this work of art!
Though the training session took place before the hottest part of the day, the players had to wrestle with sweltering temperatures.
Even in our roles on the side of the pitch documenting training, the sweat was pouring down our faces and into our eyes so we could only spare a though for those sprinting around the pitch.
There was no real let-up from the lads though, as they all demonstrated their eagerness to impress the new manager and keep up the intensity in spite of the oppressively humid conditions.
After training, Pep Guardiola and Fernandinho met the Chinese media for the first time since arriving on Friday.
In a rather toasty press conference room with standing room-only available, Guardiola expressed his concerns on the state of the Bird’s Nest Stadium pitch following heavy recent rainfall in the region but revealed his excitement to be bringing his new side to China.
Fernandinho echoed Guardiola’s sentiments and then came out with a nice line about being happy to have Pep on his side now rather than the other way around!
FERNANDINHO: (on Pep) "I’ve seen his former teams and played against them. Now he’s on my side I hope we can win trophies together." #mcfc— Manchester City (@ManCity) July 24, 2016
Following the press conference, it was a quick turnaround for us as we set off for a very special CityTV shoot… that’s all we can say for now - watch this space though.
Meanwhile, City Football Festival took place at the Century Golden Shopping Centre in central Beijing, a free event for local supporters where the new Nike away kit was officially launched and a range of fun footballing activities were laid on by City Football Schools coaches.
With live music and Q&As with first-team players, it was an amazing day and a great chance for us to meet our fans here, so look out for pictures and videos from that event here on ManCity.com very soon.
Tomorrow, it’s matchday, as City lock horns with United… fingers crossed for clear skies overnight!