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About this blog

Jeff Lenihan returns to the UK to intern at Arsenal Football Club

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Back to Nebraska...

Well, that's the end of my summer. I'm back at the University of Nebraska to finish up my last semester and graduate this December with a degree in Turfgrass Management and a minor in Business.   As I sit here in my apartment in Lincoln, I can't help but feel very grateful to everyone who has helped me over the past three years of great experiences.   First, I want to thank Weston Appelfeller at the Columbus Crew SC for answering my shot-in-the-dark email three years ago about a potential fi

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Hale End Youth Academy - London Trip Part 3

Part of being a great sports organization is being able to develop young talent into the stars of tomorrow. This often means investing time and money into a facet of the club that doesn't get a lot of the attention. Think about all of the resources put into minor league baseball. It isn't talked about often, but it is an important part of the organization.   Soccer development is similar, yet many of the kids start their club careers at a very young age. Barcelona star Lionel Messi joined his fi

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

New Soccer/NFL Stadium -- London Trip Part 2

The next destination on our day out in London was a visit to the home of Arsenals main rival, Tottenham Hotspur, at their stadium, White Hart Lane.   White Hart Lane has been the home of Tottenham since it was built in 1899. That streak will end at the conclusion of this upcoming 2016/17 season, as Tottenham will move to Wembley Stadium for one year and White Hart Lane will be torn down to make way for a new stadium on site.     Actually, the new stadium is being built right there right n

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Emirates Stadium Update: London Trip, Part 1

In one day, we looked at the Emirates Stadium, Arsenal's Hale End Youth Academy, and Tottenham's White Hart Lane. Each place was so interesting and had so much going on, I couldn't fit it into one post. So, here is Part 1 of 3:   Remember that blog post I had at the beginning of summer about the Emirates Stadium reconstruction? Well, we were able to visit the stadium this week to see how the pitch is progressing.   Paul Ashcroft, Head Grounds Manager at Emirates Stadium and Hale End Youth Ac

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

The Boys are Back in Town...

If you have been following Arsenal's Twitter feed, you'll have seen that the first team is back for preseason training this week.     There are still a few key players missing, thanks to their countries' successful runs in Euro 2016, of course. Aaron Ramsey (Wales), Mesut Özil (Germany), Laurent Koscielny (France), and Olivier Giroud (France) are all currently taking part in the semifinals of the competition.   The rest of the non-injured players are back and working hard for the start of

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Brexit... and my wages

It's been a week now since the people of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union in what you have no doubt heard called the Brexit vote. The final tally was 52% Leave to 48% Remain. Great Britain had been in the EU since it was formed, in 1993, and all the way back since 1973 when it was called the European Community.   While visiting the nearby town of St. Albans a few weeks back, I ran into campaigners from both sides of the aisle. I will admit, the Leave campaigners outnumbered

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

The Weather Here is Rubbish (and other updates from the training ground)

One of the disadvantages of being a groundsman is that not everything can be controlled, and that is best exemplified by the weather. The weather can be a groundsman's best friend or absolute worst enemy.   I really wasn't planning on writing an entire post based on the weather, but it really has been that bad. It has been a very atypical summer of weather according to the locals. There has only been one week of straight  sunshine, and its been cloudy and raining off and on since.   The main

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Euro 2016 Kicks Off

Last Friday, the UEFA European Championship 2016 kicked off in France. As expected, there are high hopes here around London about the English national team. England is one of 24 teams that are vying for the title Champions of Europe. It is very similar to the Copa America Centenario competition that is currently taking place in the United States.   Arsenal has nine current players who will be playing for their respective countries at this years Euros. These include midfield stars Mesut Özil (G

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

A New Style of Hybrid Turf: AirFibr

"There's a way to do it better - find it." - Thomas Edison   This quote by the famous inventor is a simple reminder that there is always room for improvement, even if everything seems to be going perfectly. The Arsenal ground staff is constantly on the lookout for new products and ideas to help them do what they do better.   (Diagram from naturalgrass.com)   One new development this year is the installation of a hybrid sports turf called AirFibr. Straight from the manufacturers website, 

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Emirates Stadium Reconstruction and Training Centre Renovations

It's the off-season for Premier League soccer here, but that's when the work starts at Arsenal's soccer facilities. Much like the off-season in any sport, this is when the real hard grounds work is put in, so that the benefits will show during the season.   The latest techniques in reconstruction and renovation are used to create a clean surface for new grass growth. Machinery from my last internship with Campey Turfcare is used, including the Koro Field Top Maker, Koro Top Drain, and the Recy

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

First Week at the Training Centre

My first week at Arsenal has come and gone, and so far I'm really enjoying it. We start each day at 8am, as we get our jobs for the day and get ready to go out.      Because it's the start of the summer, the days right now mostly consist of mowing the vigorously growing pitches (soccer fields). Mowing is done with either Jacobsen triplex mowers, Dennis Premier pedestrian mowers, or Honda Rear Roller rotary mowers. The triplexes are used to give the pitches a quick cut, while the Dennis mower

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

 

Back in the U.K. for another go... this time at Arsenal FC

Hello again! You might remember me from last summer's blog Pitch Prep in the UK as I travelled around Europe renovating soccer fields with Campey Turfcare. For those of you who don't remember, my name is Jeff Lenihan and I am from Omaha, Nebraska. In the fall, I will be a senior turfgrass management major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.   This summer, I am back across the pond and have the great privilege of interning at the Arsenal Training Centre. Arsenal FC has a storied soccer histo

Jeff Lenihan

Jeff Lenihan

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