Michael Giallombardo, a goalkeeper hailing from Manalapan, N.J., recently checked in with VirginiaSports.com to talk about the upcoming men’s soccer season. UVa begins preseason practice Wednesday and will travel to West Virginia for an exhibition game on Saturday, Aug. 16, at 7 p.m.
Question: Talk about the upcoming season and what you are looking forward to.
Giallombardo: It’s very exciting. This week we were all issued our gear and we’re looking forward to going out and starting practice. Everyone’s ready for a great year.
Question: How did you spend your summer?
Giallombardo: I went home to New Jersey for the first month and worked at a butcher shop, then I came back for summer sessions two and three, so I was in Charlottesville for the majority of the summer. Between working out, running, playing and school it was a pretty grueling schedule.
Question: What are your team’s goals for the season?
Giallombardo: Our goal is always to perform as best we can and give it our all everyday. Our emphasis is making it a total team effort and every player is there for one another.
Question: How about your personal goals for the 2008 season?
Giallombardo: My personal goal is to be a good role model as an upperclassman and set a good example. I’d like to try and show the younger guys what it means to play soccer at UVa and emphasize the team.
Question: What will you look to get out of the preseason exhibitions? (Aug. 16 at West Virginia; Aug. 23 vs. ODU)
Giallombardo: In the preseason, we’re looking to get all of the kinks out. We have 12 people who are either new to the program (transfers) or freshmen, so we’ll need to get used to each other. It’s not about winning or losing, it’s about getting on the same page and playing our style.
Question: Practice starts Wednesday, what is your favorite part of it?
Giallombardo: Working out with the goalkeepers is my favorite aspect of practice. We’re a close-knit group and have great relationships with each other.
Question: After the exhibitions, the season gets underway Aug. 29 and 30 with the Virginia Soccer Classic. Is it beneficial to start the season in the friendly confines of Klckner Stadium?
Giallombardo: Definitely. Last year we traveled to SMU for the opening weekend of the season and went 1-1. This year, we have a chance to start at home, which is always good. That way, you can keep your schedule, go to classes and get comfortable with your routine.
Question: Describe the atmosphere at Klckner Stadium during a home match.
Giallombardo: There is nothing like it in college soccer. The first time I really realized that was last year when we played Virginia Tech at home in front of almost 8,000 people. There was a penalty kick in double overtime and I made the save. I can remember looking up and everybody in the stadium was on their feet and cheering. It was unreal.
Question: What does it mean to you to play soccer at UVa?
Giallombardo: UVa soccer means a lot to me. I’ve been given a great opportunity to come to an outstanding school and play soccer at an awesome program. It makes the college experience really special.
Thompson Starts Laying GroundworkWomen's Basketball6/20/18Summer practice started Wednesday morning for the Virginia women's basketball team, which has a new head coach, Tina Thompson.Huff Looking to Make Up for Lost TimeMen's Basketball6/19/18A 7-1 forward from Durham, N.C., Jay Huff hopes to carve out a role in Virginia's frontcourt as a redshirt sophomore in 2018-19.Nus Traveling Road to RecoveryMen's Soccer6/18/18Rising senior Sergi Nus, an All-ACC defender who's recovering from a torn ACL, expects to be ready for Virginia's opener in August.
Director of News Content
A 1985 graduate of UVA, White worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch until July 2009. He was honored six times as the state's Sportswriter of the Year.
Jeff White: Nus Traveling Road to Recovery
M. Soccer | 6/18/2018
Rising senior Sergi Nus, an All-ACC defender who's recovering from a torn ACL, expects to be...
Men's Soccer Unveils 2018 Schedule
M. Soccer | 6/7/2018
The Virginia men’s soccer program announced its 2018 schedule that features 11 home dates...
Virginia to Play Maryland at Audi Field
M. Soccer | 5/15/2018
Cavaliers will play former ACC foe, Maryland on September 3, 2018 at Audi Field.
Barnold Takes Position with U.S. Soccer
M. Soccer | 5/4/2018
A.J. Barnold has landed a full-time role at U.S. Soccer, working closely with the United States...
Jeff White: Kessler Earning High Marks On and Off Field
M. Soccer | 4/12/2018
A rising sophomore who arrived at UVA in January 2017 with an associate's degree, Henry Kessler...
Ryan Hopkins Hired as Assistant Men's Soccer Coach
M. Soccer | 2/14/2018
Ryan Hopkins has been hired as an assistant coach for the Virginia men's soccer program, as...
Virginia Will Be Part of U.S. Soccer Spring Program
M. Soccer | 02/08/2018
Seven-time national champion, Virginia will compete in the first-ever U.S. Soccer Spring Program,...
Caldwell, Opoku Selected in MLS SuperDraft
M. Soccer | 01/19/2018
Jeff Caldwell was selected in the first round by New York City FC and Edward Opoku was taken in...
- Online Stores