Date: 17th July 2007 at 6:26pm
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Aberdeen keep up their SPL preparations by competing in the The Ettehad 1st International Football Tournament where they will play at least three matches and hopefully one more in the final or at least the 3rd and 4th play off match.

The Dons touched down in Egypt last night minus only Richie Byrne from a full squad of players desperate to show Jimmy Calderwood that he must include them in the Dons side who face Dundee United at Tannadice on the 4th of August when it all begins for real in the SPL.

Jimmy no doubt would love to come home from this competition where they will face Ettehad, Arab Contractors and Alumenem in a group stage before possibly facing the winner or runner up of the other table which consists of Maritimo, Almasry, Petrojet and Egypt Telecom in one more match but it`s the quality of the preparation for the match at Tannadice and the season ahead that he`s most concerned about.

He used last season`s successful pre-season in South Africa which he has previously claimed made a major part in the Dons 3rd place finish as his blueprint for this years training schedule and he`s hoping the Egypt excursion can provide the same springboard to success.

He told Reds Online ‘Going to South Africa last summer was brilliant for us, both in terms of building fitness and playing football. If we can have something similar in Egypt, I will be happy.’

The Dons play their first match tomorrow night against Arab Contractors at 9.30 at night in Alexandria and Jimmy has warned his boys that they maybe facing a trip into the unknown in terms of weather, standard of competition and also the different interpretations that officials may have of the rules.

He said, ‘The opposition will take a different approach and the quality of refereeing may not be what we are accustomed to.’

Aberdeen will probably have to deal will their opposition raising their game against them because the Dons head into this tournament as unfamiliar probable favourites and the spectacle that the tournament is being heavily sold on.

Jimmy continued,’It’s a major event in Egypt.

‘The games are being screened live on Egyptian television, and they are expecting good crowds at them all.

‘We’ve also been invited to a reception at the local embassy and the organisers have told us they see Aberdeen as the start attraction.

‘It’s up to us to respond to that star billing and the best way to do that is win the trophy.’