Swans Tour Diary: Part 2
10th July 2013
Jonjo Shelvey may have described the welcome he received from his new team-mates as "first-class", but it hasn't prevented the former Liverpool midfielder finding himself on the wrong end of the tour banter.
Although the England international didn't meet up with the squad in Holland until a day after the team touched down, Shelvey's name could already be heard being used frequently around the hotel - that was every time goalkeeping coach Adrian Tucker walked in!
The squad reckoned that Tucker was Shelvey's long-lost twin, much to the amusement of goalkeepers Gerhard Tremmel and young Gregor Zabret, who were being put through their paces by the coach every day.
While it is hoped that Shelvey has better feet than Tucker, the opportunity of a training ground photo together (above) was just too good to miss.
As the camera shutter clicked, shouts of "look it's the Shelveys" left the squad doubled up.
In fairness to the 21-year-old (and that's definitely not Tucker), he has taken the banter in good spirit, even when skipper Garry Monk started abusing him on Twitter.
"oops the banter has turned up has it'' replied Shelvey.
Shelvey was also officially welcomed into the group over dinner when he had to perform the traditional initiation song.
Up on the chair with a fork as his microphone, Shelvey called on the King for inspiration with a rendition of Elvis' Suspicious Minds.
With Jose Canas and Kenji Gorre having sung on the first night, it was left for Alejandro Pozuelo (now just known just as Alex), Gregor Zabret and Jordi Amat to complete the performances for the new boys in the squad.
There were plenty of actions in Pozuelo's rendition of PSY's Gangnam Style; Zabret turned to Olly Murs' Troublemaker, while Amat produced a popular Brazilian classic, apparently, by Michel Telo called Ai Se Eu Te Pego,
And, by popular demand, Simon Cowell has just released the video below which will no doubt fail to make the iTunes chart!
While the initiation ceremony helps keep the squad close-knit, there was nearly an international incident on the return bus journey after the friendly victory at Excelsior.
The tour team coach had the Wimbledon tennis final on live. And despite the fact that Britain's Andy Murray was storming to victory over world number one Novak Djokovic, the seven Spaniards took it upon themselves to support the Serbian, just to wind up the Brits.
Although they cheered Djokovic's every point, the amigos were quick to leave the coach before Murray lifted the trophy to end a 77-year wait for a British men's champion.
It wasn't the only top sporting event to take place during the tour, however, after the Lions stormed to victory in the third and deciding Test against Australia.
As the staff crowded around the only iPad in the building able to show the game live, goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel wanted to know, quite genuinely, if it was Wales playing Australia.
Of course, the Welsh members of staff were quick to say yes with a wry smile, while Tremmel followed up by asking if it was a friendly match, much to the disgust of the group who reckoned rugby still hadn't been invented in Germany!
Kitman Michael Eames, while trying to keep out of the tour diary this time after his exploits in America last year, dropped himself in it again over dinner.
Having asked what the soup of the day was, he was told asparagus, to which he replied that he wasn't going to eat it as asparagus was a type of bird.
And having enquired why everyone was laughing, he was informed that it was because asparagus was actually a fish.
The following day he stormed up to the same diners declaring with pride that asparagus wasn't a fish. "See,'' he said, "I told you it was a bird.''
Michael, if you are reading this, asparagus is a vegetable. And it was actually chicken noodle soup!