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VIDEO: UConn Men’s Soccer On Their Summer in Italy

The Huskies took a team-building trip this summer to Italy, where they soaked in the culture and style of a country with a rich soccer tradition.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

This past summer, the UConn men’s soccer team took an 11-day trip to Italy to build team chemistry as well as play a few matches against Italian teams, who tend to play a much different brand of soccer.

“The trip was fantastic,” head coach Ray Reid said. “The kids had a great time, we bonded.”

The Huskies trained at A.S. Roma and the Olympic Training Center while they were in Rome. They also had a chance to watch Serie A team Roma live.

The team’s first match was against Ternana, a Serie B team based in Terni, about 65 miles northeast of Rome. The Huskies played against their under-20 team.

That match, on May 16, ended in a 1-1 draw. Cheikh Stephane Coly scored in the 32nd minute but UConn conceded a goal in the 89th minute.

UConn played one more match, against Latina Calcio, also of Serie B, on May 22. The Huskies won 3-1 behind two goals from Adbou Mbacke Thiam and another from Jake Nerwinski.

Kwame Awuah, a senior midfielder, believes the entire team benefitted greatly from the experience.

“We played against competition and we got to see where we stand worldwide,” he said.

Senior defender Jake Nerwinski agreed.

“I think that trip really helped,” he said. “I think it helped with chemistry, it helped with bringing the guys together.”

UConn men’s soccer starts their season on Friday, when they welcome Iona into Morrone Stadium, with kickoff coming at 7 p.m. Any student can get in for free if they pick up a ticket outside the book store or on Fairfield Way until 4 p.m.