Tournament Day 1
Friday kicked off the ASA International tournament! It was a great day of soccer and because of the heat and field time, games were shortened to (2) 20-minute halves.
ASA faired well and lead the competition with two wins, a tie, and most goals-for at the end of the day. We tied our first game 1–1 against local Swedish club team Fortuna. Following our tie, we defeated two additional local club teams, LB07 (our awesome hosts) 4–0 and then Hyllie IK also 4–0.
Friday evening ASA enjoyed a special treat and LB07 hosted us at a local festival, Hamnfestivalen, with food trucks, games, music and lots of team bonding.
The Swedish soccer players treated our girls to Swedish salted licorice candy as well as local chocolate and had a soccer kick competition as well as team tug-a-war. Following the games, the girls walked the festival together and had time to socialize among themselves. It was a really great night and loved by all.
Tournament Day 2
The team got up early Saturday morning and walked Malmo with Coach Ryan to get their blood flowing. After a strong performance on Friday, our girls were ready to jump back in. The first game Saturday got off to a quick start with IFK Trelleborg scoring a goal just a few minutes into the game. By half time, we were tied 1–1, but ASA pulled out the win by scoring two additional goals in the second half ending the game with a 3–1 win. We had hoped ASA would face Fortuna in the final match, however they lost their morning game which meant we’d have to face the Trelleborg team again for the tournament final. After a tough match and lots of physical play we ended the match with a 0–0 tie and then ultimately fell to Trelleborg in PK’s. Medals were handed out to all participating teams and ASA brought home the runner-up trophy!
Saturday evening the team attended the Malmö FF pro game. Malmö played Norrköping one of Sweden’s top pro teams from outside of Stockholm. ASA had first row seats in the stadium and got to see everything close up!
It was a beautiful evening for soccer and MFF pulled of a 2–1 upset! The fans were extraordinary and ASA joined in the revelry with team chants, flag waving, and fun. After the game and a walk back to the hotel, ASA had a final meal together at a wonderful Italian restaurant offering raviolini, risotto, spaghetti and meatballs, and arctic char.
ASA heads home Sunday with memories which will last a lifetime! It was great soccer, great cultural immersion, and loads of fun!!!
Thank you to guest blogger Petra Maruca for providing these updates from the trip!