LA JOLLA, Calif. - The University of California San Diego is serving as the proud host this week of world-renowned Italian Serie A professional soccer club AS Roma.
Roma are in San Diego for their opener of the 2018 International Champions Cup (ICC), as they will take on English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur FC at SDCCU Stadium this Wednesday night, July 25. Kickoff is set for 7:05 p.m. They landed in San Diego on Sunday evening, and held their first practice session on UC San Diego's North Campus Monday morning, beginning with some weight training inside the Spanos Athletic Performance Center, before moving onto the Triton Soccer Stadium surface. A second, on-the-field session took place in the evening.
Thrilled to have Italian giants @ASRomaEN training at #UCSanDiego this week! A 🎥 👀 🔙 at their first day on campus. 🇮🇹⚽️— UCSD Athletics (@UCSDtritons) July 24, 2018
Details 🔗 https://t.co/dr3jxbW9IO#ASRoma #RomaTour #ICC2018#GoTritons 🔱 @UCSanDiego @UCSDstrength pic.twitter.com/sEseuDw169
Roma made a huge splash in the 2017-18 season, advancing all the way to the semifinals of the UEFA Champions League, the most famous and lucrative club competition in the world. After falling to eventual runners-up Liverpool FC 5-2 in the first semifinal leg in England, they won 4-2 in the return in Rome, and were thus eliminated 7-6 on aggregate.
"We are very excited to host AS Roma," said 11th-year UC San Diego men's head coach Jon Pascale. "They are one of the top clubs in the world, and to have them here training at UC San Diego is a dream come true. I am confident they will enjoy our facilities, and we hope to be a future host for years to come."
Roma will depart San Diego on Monday, July 30, and head for Arlington, Texas. Their U.S. tour will end with matches against Spanish champions FC Barcelona at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Tuesday, July 31, and against three-time defending Champions League winners Real Madrid CF, also of Spain, at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., on Tuesday, Aug. 7. The return home to Rome is Wednesday, Aug. 8.
Italian manager Eusebio Di Francesco heads into his second season in charge of the Giallorossi, or the "yellow and reds." Roma finished third in Serie A last season, qualifying directly into the group stage of this year's Champions League in September. The club call Rome's Stadio Olimpico home.
Roma feature the likes of Italian captain Daniele De Rossi in midfield, Bosnian forward Edin Dzeko, Serbian defender Aleksandar Kolarov and Argentinian newcomer Javier Pastore. Roma also have young starlets on their books in Turkish winger Cengiz Under and new arrival Justin Kluivert, the son of Dutch legend Patrick Kluivert. Also on the U.S. tour, Roma's second in as many summers, is club legend, ambassador and director Francesco Totti, among the game's all-time greats.
The sixth edition of the ICC series runs from July 20 to Aug. 12. Those unable to attend Wednesday's contest between Roma and Spurs, can watch live on ESPN2.
Both the UC San Diego men's and women's soccer programs will open their own training camps on Monday, Aug. 13, and kick off their 2018 campaigns on Thursday, Aug. 30. The men are at home that night against Biola at 7 p.m., after the women play on the road at Concordia Irvine at 3:30 p.m. The reigning NCAA Division II West Region champion Triton women contest their home opener two days later on Saturday, Sept. 1, at 3:30 p.m. against rival Western Washington, the 2016 national champion whom they knocked off 2-0 in the West Region final last Nov. 17 in La Jolla. Admission into all regular-season contests at Triton Soccer Stadium on North Campus in La Jolla, is free.
Grazie @ASRomaEN and HC @MisterDiFra for spending some time with our ⚽️ student-athletes on Thursday evening. The #Tritons come together in just 16 short days on Aug. 13 for training camp, with both teams opening 2018 season on Aug. 30!#GoTritons 🔱#ASRoma #RomaTour #ICC2018 pic.twitter.com/UIeVsJ08wF— UCSD Athletics (@UCSDtritons) July 29, 2018