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Getting Ready for Sweden

Jun 12, 2012, 10:05 AM EDT

Well, the first full day is now complete and we had two training sessions today. This morning in the rain we focused on some 5 vs. 5 play, and this afternoon we focused on some patterns of play. We are getting ready for our first game against Sweden on Friday. I am extremely impressed with this group of players. The level of talent is so impressive, but more impressive is the competitiveness of the players and their love of simply playing the game. I hope my Notre Dame team this fall can duplicate these aspects of the U-23’s!

Having Ingrid Wells, Sarah Hagen, Kika Toulouse back into camp from their experience of playing in Sweden and Germany professionally is a huge lift. Also, having Christine Nairn, who came to us from the full national team, has simply brought about a new energy and professionalism to the squad. I sit back after practice and, along with my assistants Rudy Meredith from Yale and Kat Mertz from Saint Louis, just admire how good these players really are. I don’t know if it will translate into wins this week, but I love what we are doing so far. This has simply been a great team to work with!

The food continues to be a bit of a chore for me, since I really don’t like change much, nor do I like trying new things. But the desserts are amazing!!! My gosh, I’m going to become the Goodyear blimp before I return home to South Bend. I also found out there is a button on my wall in my room that controls the floor temperature in my bathroom! Isn’t that awesome? I can walk in to shower on a heated floor — wonder why we don’t have that in the States … hmmm. I also get a new message written on my mirror every day by the cleaning lady. I’ve included a picture of what she wrote, and it means “have a wonderful day”! I must say I’ve never stayed at a hotel where they have done this either.

All in all, it’s been a very good trip so far. I’m really anxious to watch the team play on Friday! I think we have the ability to be very special. My hope is to transfer some of the things we do here to my team at Notre Dame once I return for the fall season. So, in the meantime …

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