In preparation for their upcoming seasons, MalmÃ¶ FF and Columbus Crew have landed in Bradenton, Florida. The vibrant 450-acre facility at IMG Academy, home to twelve full-size professional quality soccer fields alongside a 10,000 square foot weight room, continually attracts elite athletes and teams.
MalmÃ¶ FF, in terms of trophies, is the most successful club in Sweden, while Columbus Crew is a top-tier team of Major League Soccer here in the U.S.
In addition to the ordinary two periods in yesterday's scrimmage, MalmÃ¶ FF and Columbus Crew added an extra 45 minute period allowing three members from the IMG Academy soccer programAcademy 18Uteam to play with MalmÃ¶ FF. This presented an opportunity of a lifetime to IMG Academy soccer program students Papa Otoo, Max Brashear and Gustavo Rivera.
In reflection to training with MalmÃ¶ FF...
Said Gustavo Rivera:
âThe most important thing for me was actually getting to experience the talent level. I knew all about it, but to actually get on the field with a professional club team opened my eyes. After today, I know it will take a lot of hard work but I really feel I will be able to reach that level and play professionally one day.â
Said Papa Otoo:
"Playing with the Malmo team is one to remember. It was a great experience just to be around them, let alone the chance to play with them."
The scrimmage ended with a 2-1 result in favor of MalmÃ¶ FF.
IMG Academy soccer program not only attracts elite players and clubs to their facilities for year-round training, but also helps develop young players, boasting alum like Freddy Adu, Zak Boggs, Jon Busch and Blair Gavin.
Check out stories in Swedish outlets on the three getting a chance to play: