As Vision ICT is sponsoring the Portsmouth Ladies Beach Soccer Club this year, we thought we would let them borrow our blog page and tell us what it is like playing for the current most successful Ladies Beach Soccer Club in England. They will be writing four blog posts for us in total before, during and after their competition so keep an eye out for their posts.
This years Euro Winners cup will once again be held in Nazare in Portugal. As a team (Portsmouth Ladies BSC), to prepare, we have had 2 official training sessions weekly, however, every member of the squad has their own training programmes, which they also do on the sand in their own time! A lot of the girls also have grass football commitments, some playing in WSL 2 & WPL, so this makes it easier for us all to balance both! As current European champions, we have stepped training up this year and therefore pushed our boundaries with diet, physical and technical training. We are lucky to have an extremely knowledgeable S&C coach in Jason Campbell and an experienced player and coach in Perry Northeast, who are constantly pushing us to be better. We train closely with Portsmouth Men BSC and some of the best players in the country which give us great opportunity to learn. We often play friendlies against them in training, which allows us to apply what we have learnt, in game related situations and also test are physical, mental and tactical capacities.
Myself (Katie James) and Captain (Sarah Kempson) used a recent tournament in Oceanside, California to prepare for the upcoming tournament. We spent a week training and competing in the USA Beach Soccer Championships, against some of the best players in America. We remained unbeaten throughout the tournament and won the final 4-0 with myself and Kempson both scoring 2 goals. This is something we will look to build upon in Portugal!
After a very successful summer last year, finishing 2nd in the Euro Winners, becoming European Champions with England, Italian National Champions with Lady Terracina and winning the Tobago Beach Soccer Championships, with American side Shoreline BSC, this year, individually and as a team, focus has been on taking home the Euro Winners Cup. After heartbreak last year and a slight injustice through a blatant handball, we are more determined than ever to take the trophy home.
Following on from that, with a break from playing grass football for Portsmouth Ladies, myself and Kempson and our Dutch Keeper, will fly straight to Virginia to compete in the North American Sand Soccer Championships. After a successful trip to America last time out, we will be looking to build upon that and win this tournament also! In addition, we will have the opportunity to defend our European Title with England in July, followed by trips personally to Italy, Mexico and Tobago! After completing University in May, I am looking to travel as much as a can with Beach Soccer and win as many National Championships as possible!
~ Katie James