After an impressive and hard fought win against the Charleston Battery, TFC II will now take a step back and compete in a friendly match with one of Europe's top youth clubs, AS Roma Primavera. The club is the youth squad for Serie A side AS Roma.
In Italy, they have a separate league just for youth players, besides having a second team like many MLS sides have and other top teams in Europe.
Last season, Roma's primavera squad finished in the final eight of the leagues playoffs and finished in the final four in the UEFA Youth Champions League. A phenomenal feat for a club that has produced top talents like Francesco Totti, Daniele De Rossi, Alessio Romagnoli and Alessandro Florenzi.
This particular challenge will be something new for TFC II, as they've never played a side like Roma. It could serve as a good chance for the younger Academy players to take on a successful European club.
"They obviously have some very talented players. They've played against Boca Juniors and Bayern Munich and done reasonably well. We're looking forward to the challenge to test our players and see where we are at." said TFC II head coach Jason Bent about tonights opponent.
"It's a different type of football as well. Anytime you play a foreign competition, it looks a bit different, it feels a bit different. I think that's great exposure for our players."
Bent later went on to say that he expects a mixture of his players to make an appearance tonight. Players that were away on Pan Am duty, Academy players and even players in the starting XI all could face the tough opposition tonight.
TFC II left back Mark Serjeant looks ready for the match and wants to keep impressing his coaches, but he says that this game with Roma Primavera is good to have, but the club still has to focus on the league. "I think it's good for development on the side, but I think our league and our development there is really important as well."
Toronto FC 2015 draft pick Sal Bernal also chimed in on what a big experience it is to play a top European Academy. "When you get the chance to play a European team, it's such a great experience."
AS Roma manager Alberto De Rossi
Roma Primavera has been a top youth academy in Europe for many years. Providing its players with top equipment, facilities and opponents. The team is coached by Alberto De Rossi, the father of current Roma star and former Primavera player Daniele De Rossi. De Rossi has been manager since 2007/08 and has been able to guide his young side to one Campionato Nazionale Primavera title, being awarded the best youth club in Italy.
They have also been a top club in league play as well, just losing to bitter rivals and eventual Champions Lazio Primavera in the final eight in the leagues playoff.
De Rossi met with media prior to his side training at the Kia Training Ground yesterday and told reporters that, "It's been great so far. The organization has been great, and a big thank you to Toronto FC for the hospitality and for allowing us train in a professional manner."
"Were looking forward to how they [TFC II] play and the way tactically the football is played in Canada as well."
"It's always great to see our fans around the world when we travel. It's part of the club objectives to bring Roma and the Roma brand around the world, our style of football and our beliefs really."
De Rossi also added that he wants to, "Thank the club [AS Roma] for wanting us to travel and face all these teams from around the world."