Dragons Defender Nick Lima Trains with Molde FK in Norway
When the Burlingame Dragons Football Club re-signed UC Berkeley defender Nick Lima this offseason, the front office and coaching staff knew that there was a good chance they were obtaining the skills of a future professional for the 2016 PDL season.
Lima has had a fantastic summer as he has traveled to Italy with his Cal teammates for a tour that consisted of them matching up with some of Italy’s top youth sides. After his trip ended with his teammates, Lima jetted to Norway and spent a week training with the first team of Molde FK, a storied franchise in the Tippeligaen, the Norwegian First Division. The club is a constant participant in European competition, including the 2015 UEFA Champions League qualifiers and the 2016 Europa League, in which they reached the Round of 32.
Burlingamedragons.com caught up with Lima this week and asked him about his experiences in Italy with his team and in Norway with Molde.
Explain your experiences as you traveled with your school team and played against some top clubs throughout the continent (who did you play, etc.)
LIMA: Traveling with my school to Italy was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Being with the whole team, playing in a foreign country, training together and playing games at such a high level, was awesome. We really bonded as a team with that opportunity. After our Italy tour, I was able to go to Norway to train with Molde FK in the Tippeligaen.
What are the tangible benefits for a team as they travel overseas on an expedition like this?
LIMA: Being away from home with a team playing in a foreign country, really asks for a team to come together to perform at a high level. We learn to adapt quickly as a team. Collectively, we then need to hold each other to a higher standard and it leads to us playing at a higher level and gaining valuable experience that we hopefully can use to help us in the fall college season.
Can you explain your individual pursuits after you left your team and traveled to Scandanavia? Who did you train with while there and what was the experience like as you traveled around?
LIMA: After Italy, I went to Molde FK in Norway to train with their first team. They recently played in the (UEFA) Europa League and lost in the Round of 32 to Sevilla. So the level was definitely high. I had no time to adapt and at that level they don't wait for you to catch up, you either are at that level or you don't make it. It is a very professional environment there and it was a great experience
What is the possibility of you forgoing your senior year and signing professionally?
LIMA: They expressed interest in me coming to play in the future and were aware of me playing one last fall in college. So hopefully, once I am done with college, that opportunity will still be an option for me.
What has playing for the Dragons meant for you and how does playing for the organization benefit players who sign up to play for the team?
LIMA: The Dragons has been a very good experience. An organizations that has grown this fast in this short of time is very cool to be a part of. It is full of quality players and the level is awesome to see. Coach Bucchere is great and he demands for a professional atmosphere every day we show up and it is good for players to learn in.