FOXBORO (CBS/New England Revolution) -- The New England Amputee Soccer Team will play an exhibition match at Gillette Stadium during halftime of the New England Revolution's home match against the New York Red Bulls on Saturday, April 2.
Their exhibition on the home pitch of the Revs will come after the New England Amputee Soccer Team will play in the 2022 World Cup Qualifiers in San Juan de Los Lagos, Mexico from March 16-20.
The April 2 exhibition match at Gillette Stadium is one facet of the New England Revolution's ongoing partnership with the New England Amputee Soccer Team, which was founded in 2019 by Massachusetts' own Nico Calabria and Rafa Perdigão. The Revolution's long-term support of the team includes equipment donations and funding for team expenses including training field usage. Each year, the Revolution outfit the amputee team with customized uniforms and cleats.
In 2021, the club donated state-of-the-art, durable sets of SideStix crutches to assist the athletes in competition. To kick off the team's 2022 season, the Revolution provided funding equivalent to 16 weeks of training field time.
"We are so lucky to be supported by the Revolution and Kraft family," Calabria said. "Our team is the best equipped and supported amputee soccer program anywhere in the United States. I can't express how impactful it is to welcome new amputees to our team at high-quality facilities with a Revolution jersey. Just last week a new player tried to hand back a jersey thinking that it was a rental. It was amazing to see his face when he realized that it was his to keep and that the Revolution believe and support our mission. It means the world to me, to our team, and to the world of amputee soccer to be part of the Revolution. Thank you so much for everything they have done to bring our sport to a wider audience and to push our athletes to the next level."
The New England Amputee Soccer Team is an affiliate of the American Amputee Soccer Association, welcoming amputee athletes of all ages, genders, and skill levels. Calabria, a native of Concord and a teacher at Concord Middle School, has competed on the national stage since 2010 as captain of the U.S. Men's Amputee Soccer Team. Perdigão, a resident of Shrewsbury, began competing as an amputee athlete in his native Brazil in 2008, where he founded the country's first professional soccer team for amputees.
New England's roster features three players -- Calabria, Corey Laycock, and Vinny Fischer -- who are set to compete with the U.S. Men's Amputee Soccer Team in the 2022 World Cup Qualifiers in San Juan de Los Lagos, Mexico this week. The United States is one of five countries competing for three World Cup berths along with Mexico, Costa Rica, El Salvador, and Haiti. The World Cup is scheduled for October 2022.
Here is a look at the 2022 New England Amputee Soccer Team roster:
Nico Calabria, Concord, MA
Rafa Perdigao, Framingham, MA
Brian Bardell, Northborough, MA
Christopher Barnett, Houston, TX
Corey Laycock, Sandown, NH
Musabwa Nzirimwo, Syracuse, NY
Emily Sunderland, Cambridge, MA
Vinny Fischer, Abington, MA
David Bonfiglio, Foxborough, MA
Kelvin Jiminez, Malden, MA
Jack Manning, Foxborough, MA
Tune in to Revolution-Red Bulls on April 2 on TV38! Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
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