Archive for the ‘Argentina 2011’ Category

Saying Goodbye

Posted: November 26, 2011 in Argentina 2011

While in Argentina, we had the best guides imaginable. Sergio, Ignacio and Sebastia chaperoned us and guided us and did so much for us to make this trip so successful.

Thank you Sergio!! Go Estudiantes!!

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And thank you Ignacio. Ignacio stayed close to the players and took phenomenal care of them.

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We’ve said goodbye to La Plata, The Country and briefly toured Buenos Aires. One stop we made was at the City of the Dead. This cemetery is a remarkable collection of mausoleums built as a city. There is no green space. Only the wealthy and powerful Argentineans are buried here.

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Packed

Posted: November 26, 2011 in Argentina 2011

Falling behind posting pictures… So a quick update. Bus picks us up in an hour and we pick up the team at the country. Then off to Buenos Aires for lunch, shopping and site seeing. Flight is tonight and we’ll be home tomorrow.

Yesterday, we attended a game Gymnasia v Deportivo Merlo. I know I’m spelling Gymnasia wrong – sorry, I’ll fix it when I get the name right. Also got to the Estudiantes museum and club house. A very formal feel with cafe, piano bar and all their trophies.

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Black Friday

Posted: November 25, 2011 in Argentina 2011

Great morning for the boys. Drove to CA Independiente in Buenos Aires for their match. Florida fell 0-3 (0-1 half) against Independiete’s ’92 team. Our opponent also included several players from their first teams’s reserves for evaluation purposes. Twenty four year old Ariel was a beast.

Shopping later today and then we watch a match.

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Magic Show

Posted: November 25, 2011 in Argentina 2011

Last night, the coaches were at a dinner show snacking on Tapas and enjoying a magic show. It was very well done. And Jaime got pulled up on stage!

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I thought I had Argentina sort of figured out until this morning. We traveled to the Extreme Sports School of Argentina and found the most high tech training grounds imaginable. Here’s the basic idea: Take in good players who didn’t quite make it as division I players (at no cost to them) and put them through a highly technical program where everything is measured. And I mean everything. It’s a large walled complex with various areas that have computers and sensors that record the players’ results. Passing accuracy, dribbling time, and landing position and force are just a few examples.

After completing the program, the school tries to sell the players to clubs. To say that the school is well funded is a big understatement.

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This is the passing wall. It’s about 100 yards long with sensors in the wall that record where a ball makes contact. There are 3 starting gates ( white, yellow, red) with corresponding stripes on the wall. A play scans an ID card at the entrance gate and must run making wall passes to themselves hitting the appropriately colored stripes. After down and back, they get a left foot/ right foot score.20111124-192807.jpg

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This is me with Michelle and Robert from Arkansas. Robert is the state DOC for Arkansas. Michelle and Robert have coached at every level: youth, college and professional. Married 15 years and having coached together all that time, they are true ‘football junkies’.20111124-192632.jpg

Shopping in La Plata was fun. We got to a number of shops and did our best to support the local economy. While shopping for some soap in a Farmacia, we asked the pharmacist for directions to a wine store. Guess what, she walked us to it! Pictured below with our friend Belen is Michelle, Robert, Bill and Mel.20111124-192614.jpg

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After lunch, we returned to the Extreme Sports School of Argentina for their goalkeeping sessions. We brought Lee, Parker and Drew with us to observe. The sessions were quality.20111124-192544.jpg

Independiente & Game Day

Posted: November 23, 2011 in Argentina 2011

Today, the coaches toured the Independiente training camp about 40 minutes away. We observed training of their second team and their first team. We met with their coaches and asked questions about their approach. A lot of intense 5v5 play. In fact, both squads played a modified 5v5 game for about 90 minutes. 20111123-192831.jpg20111123-192844.jpg20111123-192912.jpg

Can anyone guess who is with me in this picture? Hint: plays for Argentina national team and is Messi’s best friend. This picture rocks.20111123-192930.jpg

We returned to the country to see the boys play their first game. It was a very good game. The boys played well and worked their butts off. Half was 0-0, final was 3-1 Estudiantes. Clayton scored for Florida assisted by Jose.

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