Cepero's MLS Preseason Update

BRADENTON, Fla.--Former Penn goalie Daniel Cepero was drafted by the New York Red Bulls in January. Since then he has joined up with the team for preseason training in Florida. During his time there he will check in at PennAthletics.com to update Quaker fans on the experience and his progress with the team.

The Red Bulls also caught up with the team's five rookies in an article that can be read by clicking here.

Feb. 8, 2006

Bradenton, Florida

Well it's been a little over a week since I joined the Red Bulls and while it was all a bit overwhelming at first, each day I get more and more comfortable with everything. Last Tuesday, January 30 I met the whole team for a meeting in Giants Stadium, where they play their home games. Everyone welcomed me to the team and all the big "stars" like Claudio Reyna and coach Bruce Arena seemed to be very humble and good people.

We then traveled to New York City for a photo shoot where we all put on the team uniforms and had our headshots and action shots taken of us in this studio in Tribeca. That was actually pretty cool.

The next day was filled with trips to the doctor for team physicals and orthopedic screenings, nothing too exciting. I did get a chance to train and play with the team on Wednesday and Thursday which was pretty exciting. It was good to finally get out on the field and just play in an informal atmosphere before heading down to Florida. It was a good couple of days to get my feet wet.

Since those first few days at Giants Stadium we've made our way down here to Bradenton, Florida with its 75 degrees and sunny weather. February 3 was our first official day of preseason and as to be expected there were a lot of first-day jitters. I didn't play as well as I would have liked and had a nice, little reality check from Claudio Reyna when he rocketed a shot past me with tremendous ease. I wasn't even angry, I was just in awe more than anything.

Since then, each day I've been getting more comfortable and learning a great deal from the veteran goalkeepers and coaches that I'm able to train with. We mostly train twice a day at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. for two hours at a time. The amount of fitness and running we've had to do hasn't been too bad its mostly a lot of playing as we're all adjusting and building that team chemistry.

February 6 we had an off-day and the team went to play mini-golf. It was a nice change of pace. I started off hot, but fell apart on the back nine. I think I finished seven over par...terrible.

Overall, I feel privileged to be working with the guys on the team and am just looking to take as much in as I can and help this team wherever I can.

Until next time...