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Thursday, July 23, 2009

"I am here for Leonardo." Oguchi Onyewu of AC Milan

Last night at the Georgia Dome, a young American, Oguchi Onyewu, made his debut for AC Milan against Mexican power, Club America. "Gooch," as he is affectionately known, grew up in the Washington, D.C. area, and graduated from Sherwood High School in Olney, Maryland. He will make a homecoming of sorts tomorrow night at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore where Milan face Chelsea of London in the World Football Challenge.

According to tournament organizers, the game will be a sell-out of 70,000 fans. Which is an incredible figure for a Friday night match in a city not known for a soccer culture. But I expect that many Chelsea and Milan fans between NYC and Washington will be in attendance. Not to mention local interest due to Chelsea's association with Baltimore youth soccer programs.

SOCCER: JUN 06 FIFA World Cup Qualifier - Honduras at United States
Onweyu has been capped 47 times with 5 goals for the USA.

Here were a few of his thoughts about his new Milanese adventure.

"Sono qui per Leonardo. Sono stato molto felice nel momento in cui mi hanno comunicato che avrei giocato nel Milan. Devo dire che mi sono anche emozionato un po', anche perchè giocare per un club così prestigioso non è cosa da tutti i giorni e non per tutti. Il fatto di essere arrivato al Milan mi fa sentire felice perchè posso essere utile per questa società. Cercherò di aiutare i miei compagni con la mia fisicità, se necessario. Anche queste sono caratteristiche che in una squadra servono. Conosco la serie A molto bene, lo ritengo un campionato difficile e anche competitivo. Sono pienamente delle difficoltà che troverò, con la presenza di tanti giocatori bravi."

Italian Source: La Gazzetta dello Sport, 22 July 2009.
"I am here for Leonardo. I was very pleased when he told me that I would play for Milan. I have to say that it was a little emotional for me, also because to play for such a prestigious club is not done everyday and not done by everyone.

The fact to arrive at Milan makes me feel happy because I can be useful for this club. I will look to help my teammates with my physical presence, if necessary. Also these are characteristics that serve a team.

I know the Serie A very well, I view it as a difficult league and also competitive. I know fully well of the difficulties I will encounter, along with the presence of so many great players."

Learn Some Italian Phrases

If you are new to Italian calcio like Oguchi, here is an article that I wrote a few years ago that might be helpful:

Soccer Terminology In The Mother Tongue - Part 1 - From The Beginning - Italiansrus.com

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