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Former Orlando City midfielder Antonio Nocerino signs with Benevento Calcio

Former Orlando City midfielder Antonio Nocerino (23) signed celebrates after scoring a goal during the 2017 season. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel)

Former Orlando City midfielder Antonio Nocerino has found a new home in Italy.

The Lions opted not to pick up the option on Nocerino’s contract after the 2017 season and he had a long break before signing July 6 with Serie B club Benevento Calcio, an Italian side near his hometown Naples.

Nocerino, who competed on the Italian national team, enjoyed his greatest success with Milan from 2011-16, scoring 12 goals during 74 appearances.

The 33-year-old shared a picture of himself training with his new team on Instagram, adding the hashtag #newchallenge.

#newchallenge

A post shared by Antonio Nocerino 23 (@antonocerino) on

Orlando City owner Flávio Augusto da Silva posted in the comments section, “I wish you all the best!!!”

Nocerino told Italian media he plans to retire in Orlando with wife and four children, but he missed playing and appreciated the chance to compete with Benevento Calcio.

“I still have the fire inside. I was released, but I did not feel ready to quit. I’m still fine and I want to prove it,” Nocerino told Gazza Mercato, according to a translation.

Nocerino scored one goal during 52 appearances with Orlando City from 2016-17. He went through a bumpy adjustment to MLS before finding his footing and developing into a team leader who mentored younger teammates.

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