Fresh off his first professional season, Chicago Fire Homegrown midfielder Collin Fernandez didn’t take time to rest on his laurels but instead headed abroad for a two-week training stint with Spanish La Liga side Villarreal from Dec. 6-18.
“I trained with the U-19s for the first week, then the B and C teams in the second week,” said the 18-year-old Fernandez. “The sessions were very technical. They weren’t long but they were very intense. All the players were very technical on the ball. The most common thing was probably how they all had good feet.”
Coincidentally, this was the second consecutive year that the Downers Grove, Ill. native spent the offseason training in Spain. Last December, Fernandez joined the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team for a 10-day camp in Marbella, Spain where they took on the German U-18s in a pair of friendlies.
WATCH: Get To Know Collin Fernandez
“Training in Spain was great preparation for next season as it kept me physically and mentally sharp, and kept me sharp on the ball,” said Fernandez. “It helped me be smarter on the ball and make better decisions, to play quicker and work on bettering my first touch.”
Fernandez made his Major League Soccer debut on July 19, 2015, coming on as a late substitute in a road match vs. Columbus Crew SC.