Editors Note: UNC Asheville head women's soccer coach Michelle Demko is assisting the U-23 National team in Spain for the next few weeks. She will be blogging about her experience as an assistant coach with the team. This is her third blog.
"Today was a good day. We beat Norway 3-1 in our first game of the Four Nations Tournament. We put together a good showing despite the cold weather, wind and rain that La Manga, Spain gave us today! There was some thunder and lightning but the players never wavered. They remained focused and on the task at hand. We came out of the gate flying and did not look back all game. Two players earned their first international cap, so that we neat to see and be a part of it for them. Everyone had an opportunity to play today and did well which makes our job, as the staff, difficult in selecting the starting lineup for the next match.
England and Sweden played after our game today, so the staff stayed behind and scouted both opponents. We play Sweden on Saturday and England on Monday; both games will be a challenge for us. Not much celebrating at the international level. As soon as one game was finished, we head right to scout our next opponent and have been watching film and breaking them down, as well as analyzing our game today against Norway. There is a bigger picture and that is we came to win. We will watch our game video tomorrow evening and see what we need to clean up then we will jump into the
Tomorrow is also the first opportunity we have to get out and explore the LaManga culture. We are heading to local shops and cafes to be tourists and take in a bit of the city. We realize the players have been great about being focused and staying on site for almost a week. They need to venture out and see something other than the dining hall. I hope to have some pictures up on Facebook after we return from our excursion. The resort is almost like its own city. There are restaurants, cafes, shops, a golf course, mini golf, a tennis center, supermarket...the list goes on and on. You can walk into the reception area and ask for a shuttle to take you anywhere you need to go and BOOM, 5 minutes later some man is saying, "Hello where would you like to go today." It's great and gives you the feel of freedom without really having any while on these trips.
Congrats USA on a great start to this tournament. Let's keep it going!!! More after our game against Sweden."