Tampa Tour: A great week - but roll on City's return to Championship battle at Swansea
It's been quite the week shadowing Norwich City's warm weather break in Florida but I'm looking forward to Daniel Farke's team being back in game mode - and it's clear the players are as well.
This trip has been a fine exercise in representing the club’s brand on the international stage and I’m told word has spread around the area that an English team are visiting, with a few mentions on local TV stations as well.
Daniel Farke and Stuart Webber seem confident that they’ve managed to work the week in a way that will only act as a benefit to the players who are out here.
The team are due to arrive home on Sunday before a full day to catch up with their families and shake off any aftereffects of travelling across the Atlantic, before fully setting their sights on Swansea on Tuesday.
I’m flying overnight and landing early Sunday morning before heading into London to meet my dad and watch England take on Croatia at Wembley, so desperately hoping for no flight delays, with a 2pm kick-off to attend.
I’ve been to the national stadium for several matches, including the very first proper match when the England U21s took on Italy in 2007 and of course City’s play-off triumph three years ago, but never an England senior game. So keep your fingers crossed for me!
It brings an end to a really interesting week, packed with interviews, thanks to Visit Tampa Bay, City’s official destination partner, helping to ensure we could send someone across the pond.
Webber, Farke, Jordan Rhodes, Grant Hanley, Louis Thompson, Adam Drury, Stephan Phillips, Grant Holt, Ben Kensell and others from the touring party have all made themselves available for interviews across the week, so I hope our coverage has been able to provide plenty of insight to what’s been going on in Florida.
It’s the first time I’ve spent time in Tampa properly and it’s a city packed full of culture and a real haven for food lovers, with the Cuban influence very apparent.
But I’m ready for some chilly winter football now, starting with a lovely 600-mile longest trip of the season to South Wales next Saturday.