Marit Gjelsten is one of the persons that have done voluntary to get the club to Norway Cup for the third time. She has together with other Norwegians, that lives in and around Alfas del Pi ,volunteered to help the Spanish football club.
The fact that they have shown great interest in helping the football club are greatly appreciated. When coach Juan Antonio Lopez is going to explain how much it means to the team, he has no words to describe it, because it means so much to the club.
What creates the most interest and gathering place is the local festivals that the Norwegians organizes. Here, the parents of the players cook food and people pay 15 Euro to get in. Then the Spaniards learn how to volunteer to make money for the club.
The contact network that Gjelsten has, have helped to get both football balls, drinking bottles and football jerseys from Norwegian sponsors. In addition, Ekeberg Camping has sponsored the stay. Gjelsten says there are always boys in that are 15/16 years old who are allowed to travel to Norway Cup. Thus, there are always new players who get to experience the Cup and they have something to look forward to.
The Norwegian sponsors do not only support the club, several has also been cheering along the sidelines during Norway Cup, with Spanish flags and roars. Some of them are from the Albir bocca club, they have sponsored the football team so much that they have got their name on the back of the teams jackets. The atmosphere has been great during all the matches they have been playing. When they today won the ⅛ final the roars and cheering was many and long, after an intense and exciting match.
– There are a lot of spectators here and we feel like professionals, Lopez says.
The boys have experienced a lot outside the football field until now, as well. One of the thing they have done are grilling at Jenny Jensen. They were invited by Jensen as a result of her singing at one of the parties the Norwegians organized in Alfas del Pi.
-The boys were honored when they got invited to visit a Norwegian celebrity, and they wanted to know all about here, so they google her before the visit, Gjelsten says.
Jensen also come and cheer at the players when they today played the match, and she song “Viva España” together with the rest of the spectators, several times.
Gjelsten think it is important that the boys get to experience Norwegian culture and food, and until now the food has fallen into taste, including grilled salmon that Ekeberg Camping offered.
– It was 10 kg salmon partitioned on 16 boys, Gjelsten says.
But the boys’ favorite is Norwegian lomper (potato wraps). They are heating two lomper and lubricates Nugatti (like Nutella) all over it.
One of the players, Kenan Holliday, tells that they are very pleased with both the team’s efforts and what they have got to experience. They are also impressed with how well everything is organized here. Now that the team has come closer to the final, they want to score further goals.
– The goal is to win the Cup, says Holliday.
Text/photo: Lone Karin Brochmann