Sheffield Wednesday: Owls reporter Dom Howson's diary from Portugal

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I have jetted across Europe to follow Carlos Carvalhal's side in the manager's homeland.

Wednesday's coaching staff and squad flew out on Thursday afternoon to Faro, Portugal, to begin their five-day training camp - and The Star have their every move covered.

Barry Bannan, left, and Liam Palmer

Barry Bannan, left, and Liam Palmer

Here is my daily diary:

The Owls arrive in the Algarve, with the temperatures in the 30s, and train for the first time in the evening at their Portugal base. Forwards Gary Hooper, Marco Matias and Steven Fletcher all complete the session, having recovered from minor injuries.
There were a couple of notable absentees from the squad. Both Joe Wildsmith and Lewis McGugan missed the trip. It remains unclear how long Wildsmith will be out of action for after hurting his finger in the warm-up against Benfica.

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Wednesday's players are put through their paces in the morning to avoid the sweltering midday heat as they step up their preparations for the CD Nacional friendly on Sunday. The session consisted of light running and various passing, dribbling and shooting drills. They rounded things off with a mini match.
After arriving at the airport, I was picked up by a taxi driver called Simon. He was a charming, friendly bloke and he just happened to be a Sporting Lisbon fan so he remembers Carvalhal from his time in charge of the Portuguese giants.
"He was well liked by the fans and we played good football," he said. "He started off well but came in at a difficult time. We were going through quite a few changes."
The Owls' squad have another one hour training session in the evening.

Wednesday's players being put through their paces.

Wednesday's players being put through their paces.

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The team complete a light training session in hot conditions in the morning before enjoying a bit of down time in their hotel. Following an hour's team meeting, Carvalhal's men train again in the evening, going through team shape and pattern ahead of their fourth warm-up match. The emphasis was on spreading the play from side to side quickly and whipping in pin-point crosses into the six-yard area.

There was a bit of fun at the end of the session, with striker Atdhe Nuhiu going in goal. The big man pulled off a string of impressive stops at full stretch to deny Ross Wallace, Steven Fletcher and company. If Wednesday need an emergency goalkeeper at any stage next season, Nuhiu could definitely do a job based on this showing!

I later bump into a few Owls fans also staying at the team hotel. When the couple booked their holiday, they had no idea that they would be rubbing shoulders with the team! It is their second visit to the Algarve in 2016. Their last trip coincided with the Championship Play-Off final!

Another light workout in the morning followed by a rest and recovery session. With a fortnight to go until Wednesday kick off their Championship season with a mouth-watering televised encounter with Aston Villa, Carvalhal plays a strong side versus CD Nacional.
Wednesday cruise to a 4-0 victory after goals either side of interval from Fernando Forestieri, Gary Hooper (2) and Steven Fletcher at the Estadio Municipal Stadium. The pitch wasn't the best but the Owls got the job done. Their finishing was of the highest standard. It bodes well for the future that their strikers are all fit and firing.
Carvalhal tells me that he will allow Lewis McGugan to leave this summer. The midfielder is currently back home in England, having been left-out of their squad for the five-day training camp in the Algarve.
“Lewis is a very good player and can play in a lot of teams in the Championship but he has difficulties playing our game," says Carvalhal.

The players take part in a light 45 minute session, consisting mainly of stretching, jogging and some tactical work at the end. Carvalhal plans on giving game time to the likes of Jake Kean, Jeremy Helan and Atdhe Nuhiu in tonight's training exercise with Portimonense. Youngsters George Hirst, Connor O’Grady, Jack Lee, Sean Clare and Jack Stobbs could also be given a chance to shine.

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