ready for world stage Panama
In 2009, having beaten the Bahamas, 52-6, in Panama City, the Panamanians lost a qualifying game to Mexico, 26-0, in front of a 5,000-strong capacity crowd the Estadio Roberto Tapatio Mendez Mexico City and missed out on qualifying for the inaugural junior event, which was played in Canton, Ohio.
Three years later,
takes up the tournament’s fourth seed under head coach Raul Arosemena. A 41-player roster selected from tryouts attended by more than 80 hopeful players will face Panama on Saturday in the tournament’s opening game. Kickoff is 9 a.m. CT at Burger Stadium in Austria ’ state capital. Texas
The youngest player on the roster, Adolfo Altamirano, is 16 years old, while the majority of the squad enter age 17 to 18.
“We expect to face strong rivals with more experience in terms of games who are more physical and technical than our team,” Arosemena said.
“But our boys have enthusiasm, desire and the mental agility to be able to cope with the commitments of this tournament. The speed and elusiveness of our athletes will complicate things for our opponents.”
President of the Panamanian American Football Association Guillermo Suarez added: “We could not have made this visit to
without the support of the national government and the office of the first lady, Marta Linares de Martinelli, and several Panamanian companies and businesses.” Austin
Panama’s most celebrated player, who represented his country in 2000, is defensive lineman Frank Davis who after playing college football at the University of South Florida became the first Panamanian to ever play and then start a game in the NFL when he lined up for the Detroit Lions.
Read about Panama’s sendoff from home as they left for Texas under the guise of the nation’s sports media at PanaAmerica.com: http://www.panamaamerica.com.pa/notas/1192778-tropa-panamena-estara-el-mundial-sub-19- and Todosports.com http://www.todosports.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7464:panama-al-mundial-de-austin&catid=83:nacional&Itemid=131
See photos of the
press conference here: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150899679713133.404164.155822233132&type=1 Panama