Football

Arsenal agree deal for fitness coach Shad Forsythe

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Germany's expert fitness coach Shad Forsythe has agreed to work alongside Tony Colbert at Arsenal next season, reports Goal.

The 40-year-old is working alongside Joachim Loew at the World Cup in Brazil but will become the newest member in Arsene Wenger's backroom team at London Colney once pre-season begins.

Appointing the renowned fitness guru is a huge step towards Wenger's vision of introducing a new era at the Emirates Stadium, which involves making major upgrades to their training facilities as well as updating their training methods.

Forsythe has worked with Germany for 10 years and has been largely credited with keeping the team fit and healthy before, during and after major tournaments. But he will leave to form a partnership with Arsenal's fitness coach Colbert, who has held the position for 16 years.

Wenger originally drew up plans to poach Forsythe from Germany's national team after Arsenal's season was seriously hampered by a succession of serious injuries. Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Lukas Podolski all spent significant time on the sidelines with injury and Wenger wants to bring Arsenal's fitness techniques back up to world leading levels.

Although some injuries can be attributed to misfortune, the fact that Arsenal players were missing for more days of the season than any other club has forced Wenger to rethink the way he trains his team.

The Gunners hope the appointment of Forsythe will help modernise their injury prevention techniques and signifies the start of what could be major changes at London Colney.

Arsenal's training ground was state of the art when it was first opened in 1999 but since then Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur have overtaken them by building more modern facilities.

Wenger is personally overseeing plans that would significantly improve Arsenal's training facilities, taking around three years to implement and costing the club millions of pounds.

There are plans to build offices purely for analysis as well as plans to build a new athletic development centre, whatever that is.

All of this work is aiming to deliver on Wenger's promise to drag Arsenal into a new era of success. When he first arrived in north London, extensive work of the infrastructure fast tracked Arsenal to the top of the Premier League. The plan is now to invest heavily in the same areas once again with the ultimate target of keeping Arsenal one step ahead of their rivals.

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Football

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