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Buczkowski joins Independence
Midfielder Jen Buczkowski spends her off seasons training with Bridges F.C. Prior to her season opener in Philadelphia, we had a chance to sit down and ask her some questions.
1. What was it like winning the first ever WPS title?
Winning the championship was amazing especially against LA, who had done so well throughout the entire season. What was more memorable was the entire season and experience. In Jersey we had 3 different coaches in one season and obviously went through a lot of ups and downs. We were at the bottom of the table, made our way up to get the 4th playoff spot and then ended up winning it all. Besides winning, I learned so much, so fast in that first season.
2. How has pre season camp gone?
After being drafted in the expansion draft to Philadelphia and settling in to a new team and environment, I’d say preseason is going really well so far. Everyone is getting to know each other both on and off the field and I think our coach, Paul, is doing a great job of getting the team to buy into his tactics and philosophy.
3. What is it like being in with a new team?
Its been a lot of learning so far. Obviously with a new coach and philosophy you have to adapt to that. And then with an entire new team you have to start to come together real quick. Whereas most teams already have a solid core 10 players, we are all just coming together for the first time, so there is a lot of learning involved.
4. How is Philly? Miss anything about Chicago?
I’m enjoying Philly. Paul keeps us very busy so I haven’t had much of a chance to venture out into the city. I definitely miss family and friends from Chicago. And will always prefer a deep dish pizza from Lou’Malnatis over a cheesesteak!
5. What are you most looking forward to this season?
I think just the chance to compete everyday whether it be in training or at a game. There are only 8 teams in this league. That’s 176 girls that get to call themselves a professional women’s soccer player. Obviously winning is always a first. But to be in this environment and a part of the Philadelphia Independence makes me realize how lucky I am.
6. How did you spend your off season? Do you feel it helped?
I spent the offseason back home in Chicago. I took some time off in the beginning, but then quickly got into things. I worked a lot on my fitness at a place called Athletic Republic in the beginning and then got into team training sessions with both boys and girls. Training with the boys at Brett’s was definitely very helpful. Going up against guys that are playing in the MLS and overseas is something you can’t match when training with girls. Their speed of play and tactical awareness helped my game so much.
7. Have you been to the Rocky Statue? The liberty bell? Any other landmarks?
We will actually just took a bus tour of the city of Philadelphia. We started the tour with an appearance on CBS news and then went to the Rocky Statue to climb the great steps and the liberty bell for some team pictures. We also went and tried the famous Philly Cheesesteaks.
8. Where will you be playing (position)?
It looks like I’ll be playing in the midfield this year. Probably more defensive.
9. Any type of involvement with the new Philadelphia MLS team?
Unfortunately no connection to the men’s team.
10. Anything else u feel like u want to share?
Philly will be playing in Chicago at Toyota Park May 15th. COME OUT!!!!