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The Wright Stuff

Catching up with former UVM men’s soccer star Brian Wright
Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 7:23 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Brian Wright is one of the greatest players to ever come through the UVM men’s soccer program. The Cats second all-time leading scorer was especially lethal his senior year, leading the Cats with 14 goals and 12 assists.

Five years on, he still looks back at his time in Catamount Country fondly.

“The program, I still try to follow,” Wright said. “I don’t get to watch the games as much as I’d like to, but definitely. I follow them on social media. The first couple years I was down in New England, I would stop through for a month and train. I still keep in contact with a lot of the guys, we have a big group chat, even with Jesse and Rob are in it as well. So we’re all still in contact, everybody talks here and there.”

After graduation, Wright was Vermont’s highest ever MLS draft pick, going 20th overall to the New England Revolution in the 2017 Superdraft. He’s bounced around a bit, but five years into his career, he’s found a new home close to his actual home.

“Obviously there’s been some ups and downs in my career,” Wright said. “I was with New England for three seasons. Ended up going down to Birmingham where I knew the staff pretty well from being there on loan. And then I ended up coming back home to Canada, which is nice, because I haven’t lived at home since 2013 when I left for school.”

Wright is the second leading scorer this season for Atletico Ottawa, a team in the young Canadian Premier League co-owned by Spanish giant Atletico Madrid.

“Yeah obviously Atletico Madrid is a huge club,” Wright said. “They won La Liga last year so it’s nice that we have that affiliation with such a big club.”

It’s part of a broader movement that has seen the sport make tremendous strides north of the border in recent years.

“It’s very exciting times right now,” Wright said. “The women’s national team, they were able to change their medal from bronze to gold. Obviously we have the (men’s World Cup) bid with America and Mexico in 2026. The men’s national team, this is the first time we’ve made the (final round of CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying) in I don’t know how many years it is. The country is very excited for both national teams right now so we’re just looking to make progress and see how far we can go with this right now.”

Now unfortunately with the continued border issues and Ottawa coming down the back stretch of their schedule, Wright hasn’t been able to get back to Burlington recently.

“I’m hoping to come back within the next few months,” Wright said. “The border’s obviously closed a little bit right now on the road, but we’ll see if I can book a flight and swing through the town.”

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