Just got back from FC Buffalo’s inaugural game at All-High Stadium. The Blitzers fell 3-0 to the Erie Admirals, but what happened on the field wasn’t as important as the significance of an organized soccer team playing in Buffalo again.
It’s great to see a team back in the Queen City and most everyone in attendance this afternoon seemed to enjoy themselves. It was a little quiet at times, but I think once word really gets out about the team, people will come to embrace it and get a little rowdy.
Having players on the roster with local ties will certainly help, too. Sitting in the stands, I got the sense that if the team can manage a few wins and generate some buzz on their own, then there’s potential for large turnouts. World Cup fever may also help.
I grew up playing soccer and while I was never great (or really very good), the game has always been an important part of my life. I went to countless Blizzard games and even got to play on the turf a few times at then-Marine Midland Arena. So when the Blizzard franchise folded, it left a void in the community that hasn’t been filled until now. I’m also glad I was able to share the experience with my brother, who will certainly spread the word about the team, as well.
Like I said, Buffalo lost 3-0, but they did have numerous chances to score and were in the game until late in the first half when the Admirals scored two quick goals before stoppage time.
And the Admirals are no slouches, either. In fact, they could very well be Buffalo’s toughest competition this season. Erie went 11-1-1 last season with their one loss coming in the league championship game. So for an expansion club to hold their own against an experienced squad like that is pretty impressive.
I’ll be back in the stands next Sunday when the Blitzers host New Jersey. Hope to see you there.