For the first time, the NASL Tampa Bay Rowdies are headed overseas for preseason training.
is taking the Rowdies on an 11-day trip to
Portugal, where they will be based in Rio Maior, 50 miles north of the capital city of Lisbon and is home to the Portuguese Olympic training center.
“We have a squad of mostly new
players and the trip to Portugal will give the team an opportunity to bond while testing ourselves against some very good teams,” said Rowdies president and general manager Farrukh Quraishi
. “Being away also allows us to focus on the upcoming season with minimal distractions. Playing four quality games in a span of 10 days is
pretty grueling and will be good preparation for the upcoming NASL season.”
The Rowdies will open with a match against third division Fatima on March 1. They'll then play Benfica's
U-20's and Sporting's "B" team in Lisbon before finishing up back in Rio Maior against Alcanenense on March 6.
Tampa Bay is one of three NASL teams to train overseas
The New York Cosmos won the Lunar New Year AET Cup in Hong Kong on Thursday with a shootout win over South China after their match ended 2-2. A late goal from substitute
Andres Flores in the 88th minute enabled the Cosmos to tie the game.
Minnesota United FC, which is currently in Arizona, will take a trip to Brazil