While he's away with the England Under-20 squad for the 2013 FIFA U20 World Cup, James Ward-Prowse is blogging exclusively for saintsfc.co.uk.
Ward-Prowse and the rest of the England Under-20s squad have arrived in Turkey, where they are now preparing for the World Cup to kick off in ten days' time. The 18-year-old has sent over his latest blog direct from the team's base in Antalya:
There's been a great atmosphere in the camp since our meet-up on Monday, when we entered the final bits of preparation for our departure for Turkey. The lads were itching to get out there.
Having spent the weekend with my family and enjoyed a nice BBQ in the sun, I met up with the team on Monday, when we did a light session in the afternoon consisting of attacking passing and movements. We then rested up and recovered to prepare ourselves for the next day of training.
We had a double session on the Tuesday, consisting of high-quality possession games in the morning, followed by lunch and again some similar possession games in the afternoon plus some shooting practice from crosses.
It was interesting in the morning as there was a lot of attention on us from the media as myself and a few others had to do interviews for various sports channels. The cameras were there to capture parts of our training in the build up to the World Cup, and we also had our official team photograph taken.
In the evening, we all sat down and watched the Under-21s play against Israel. It was a disappointing result to say the least, but again it was pleasing to see Clyney put in a solid performance.
Wednesday morning was the start of a long travel day for us. We set out early from St George's Park and headed for Birmingham airport, where we flew to Istanbul. Having arrived in Istanbul, a few hours later we took another flight south to Antalya where we are based for the first two weeks. We were greeted in Antalya again by numerous members of the media, as well as a group of Turkish dancers who welcomed us fittingly into the country.
Having researched the hotel online, we were all excited about the facilities available to us and they certainly lived up to our expectations! Our rooms were pristine with a lovely view over looking the city, and all of the hotel staff were very welcoming.
All of the lads are desperate to play the games now. Although the Under-21s weren't successful in their bid for success, our determination as a group is greater than ever to do the country proud and bring some success home.
To be handed the opportunity to represent my country at the age of 18 at a FIFA World Cup is something dreams are made of. I have relished many things over the last year: playing on the world stage in the best league in the world, testing myself against the best teams and players in the world and the World Cup is another challenge I'm relishing!
I believe this experience of tournament football - leaving friends, family and girlfriend behind for a long period of time, having to play a match, rest and recover and play again within a matter of days and facing different types of opposition – will benefit me as a player and I feel I will be able to offer the team a lot more upon my return to Southampton - in the Premier League!
Come on England!
Keep checking saintsfc.co.uk over the coming weeks for more of James's blogs direct from Turkey!