Sophomore Mollie Pathman is traveling to La Manga, Spain with the U-20 U.S. Women's National Team. She is going to be providing a blog during the trip so Blue Devil soccer fans can follow the team on this special trip. To submit questions for Pathman, email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. She wants to know what you want to hear about her trip to Spain.
The rest of the trip has gone very well. We went 3-0 for the week and were the winners of the Four Nations Tournament (Germany got second, Norway third and Switzerland was fourth). We beat Germany 1-0 on Saturday. They are the defending U-20 World Cup champions so it was a great game, very competitive.
We have come a long way this week, have learned a lot and this showed in the game. The match also revealed some aspects of our game that we still have to work on if we want to qualify and potentially win the World Cup. On Monday, we beat Norway 2-0. This was also a great game for us. Overall, this trip has been amazing preparation for the qualifications in a few weeks.
On Sunday, we got to explore Spain again. We went to a harbor and walked around the stores. Most were closed because it was Sunday but we could go into a few. The biggest hits on the team were Duffin Dagels (Dunkin Doughnuts) and Burger King. Burger King had mugs with the Premier League teams logos on them that they sold for one euro (The love for soccer here is unbelievable.) We all got them as souvenirs.
Tonight they took us out to eat for our first team meal away from the hotel. We went to an Italian place -- the pizza and ice-cream was amazing. It was nice to eat something other than just pasta; I am starting to get sick of it. The best part of the meal was this cake like desert that the Norway men's team gave us. It was one of their birthdays and they had extra. It was incredible.
From this post it may seem like all we do is eat and play games but we spend a lot of the time bonding as a team, doing recovery pool sessions, training and having meetings. We also have down time to relax, and do some homework.
On Tuesday, we will have a specialized training designed to help us adjust to the heat we will face in Panama. We will also go over what we should do in the 10-day break we have before we leave for Panama. At night we will finish our packing and get ready to head home early on Wednesday.