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Pre-season Round-Up: Sports, songs and signings

A look at how some EFL clubs have been stepping up their 2018/19 preparations

20 July 2018

With just two weeks until the 2018/19 season gets under way, preparations have gone up another notch with EFL clubs getting their players match-fit for the upcoming campaign.

Pre-season friendlies are the best way to do that, and Walsall had a rather notable one this week when four-time European Cup winners Ajax Amsterdam came to town.

The Dutch side were ultimately undone by Saddlers' summer signing Andy Cook; last season's top scorer in The National League netting a goal either side of the break to seal a memorable 2-0 victory at Banks's Stadium.

Bury have also been in action, hosting Merseyside pair Liverpool and Everton in the past week, successfully negotiating through the two matches unbeaten. The Reds were held to a goalless stalemate at Gigg Lane, while Neil Danns' goal helped secure a 1-1 draw against the Toffees.

Milton Keynes Dons have been getting set for the Sky Bet League Two campaign in Spain, where they have already played out a 0-0 draw with UD Almeria. However, it's not just football that's been keeping the players entertained.

The squad have partaken in some cricket on the local beach, before hitting the courts for a bit of head tennis. Paul Tisdale's men head back to Buckinghamshire after facing FC Jumilla on Friday evening.

While work on the training ground is vital, there is still plenty of work to be done when it comes to strengthening for the new season, and it's been a busy week at Pride Park where Frank Lampard continues to make his mark on the squad.

Earlier this week, two loan signings were announced; Mason Mount from Chelsea, and Harry Wilson – who shone at Hull City last term – from Liverpool. On Friday, the permanent signing of Brentford's Florian Jozefzoon was confirmed. Lampard's Rams kick the EFL season off when they travel to Reading on Friday 3 August.

In League Two, Crawley Town made two impressive signings on Thursday, with Romain Vincelot and Filipe Morais linking up with boss Harry Kewell at the Stadium.

Last but not least, Aston Villa's Andre Green. The teenager was looking sharp last season before injury ended his campaign. He's back now, and football's not all he's been playing...

Check out the winger's impressive piano rendition of the Oasis classic, Wonderwall, below. Maybe Green will be 'key' to Villa's success this season...

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