Men's Soccer: Days 1 & 2 In England
Aug. 18, 2004
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND -
4:00 p.m. -- The bus leaves campus, and the team pays homage to the men's basketball team's trip to Italy by eating their last meal before they get on the plane at Three Brothers Italian Restaurant.
5:00 p.m. -- The team leaves Three Bothers (with full bellies) and slugs up the Baltimore-Washington Parkway at rush hour.
5:45-7:30 p.m.-- Check-in at BWI. There are long waits at both the ticket counter and the security check points. Most people pass the time by looking at each other's passport photos. Some highlights: freshman Maurice Edu's passport from 1999, in which he was about 13 years old and looks it in the photo; and assistant coach Brian Pensky's photo, which includes a much more tan and wispy-haired look. Chris Lancos vows that he will come back to the United States with an English accent, and that he will keep that accent until November.
8:45 p.m. (EST) - 9 a.m. (London Time) on August 18 -- It was roughly six hours for the pleasantly uneventful flight. Each seat had a personal screen to watch and there were several movies that the players could choose from (including 50 First Dates, Independence Day, 13 Going on 30, Shrek 2), in addition to 12 music channel selections. The consensus is that the beef meal was legitimately tasty, with Pat Wilson commenting that Emeril was making the meals in the back of the plane.
9 a.m.-11:50 a.m.-- A long layover in London before boarding the flight to Manchester.
11:50 a.m. - 1 p.m.-- Flight from London to Manchester. Most players are sleeping hard before the plane even takes flight.
1-2:15 p.m.-- The Terps claim baggage (all of it arrived!) and get on a bus to travel 20-30 minutes to the University of Manchester. The squad meets Eric, who will be our host for the 12-day trip.
2:30 p.m.-- The squad drops off its bags and gets immediately into practice gear and meets on the fields to begin training.
2:45-4:15 p.m.-- Practice. The team gets loose, stretches, does a few drills and then plays a little. Impending weather cuts the session a little short, and the team makes it back to the dorm before the hard rain hits.
4:35-6 p.m.-- The team meets and goes to the cafeteria for dinner, which includes a selection of roast beef, meat balls, pasta, carrots and potatoes.
6:15-6:35 p.m.-- Eric shows the team around campus, pointing out the main buildings and the ways to get to the main streets, so everyone knows their bearings during their free time. Eric also gives them some information about their opponents, telling them that they are all professionals, but they are also all going to be the same ages as they are and which teams will likely be the strongest.
6:35-7:30 p.m.-- Another practice session, another practice session cut short by thunder and lightning.
8:20-9 p.m.-- Team meeting. Players are encouraged to get as much sleep as possible, as it will play its first game tomorrow afternoon against Crewe Alexandria.
Please be sure to check in for another report and photo gallery on Maryland's preseason training trip on umterps.com tomorrow.