While newly-formed MLS franchize of Atlanta United FC got all the attention across Europe, there is another professional team in the United States that is having their debut season in the countriy’s second best league, known as the NASL and deserves just as much attention, if not more.
The Deltas are the first professional San Francisco club in over 10 years having opened their account with a 1:1 draw against MLS hopefuls Indy Eleven from Indianapolis in front of 4,133 attending soccer lovers at the half-empty (or let’s call it half-full) Kezar Stadium.
The fact that only one player of the first team squad is a local, speaks enough about how soccer is not the preferred sport for majority of the San Francisco youth community. Young Canadian head coach, Marc Dos Santos, asked for the community’s help this season as the Deltas are set to play 17 more games on their own ground.
“We need people that like and love soccer in San Francisco to be with us, to be in the stands, to support us,” Dos Santos said to the NBC.
“Because we’re going to need to be warriors at home, knowing how much we’re going to suffer on the road.”
Former Montreal Impact midfielder Kyle Bekker converted from a Kenny Teijsse cross for the club’s historic first goal which sent the crowd that included Mayor Ed Lee into raptures and despite Tanner Thompson’s equalizer just before the hour mark, everyone associated with the Deltas will hope that the fans return for more in April when they host the North Carolina Railhawks.
This being the club’s first ever game wasn’t the only historic event that happened on match day. Namely, the San Francisco Deltas are formed and funded by a host of Silicon Valley executives, who have fresh ideas on how to bring the sport of soccer closer to the local community. One of those ideas came to fruition on Sunday as the Deltas became the first soccer club from North America to have broadcasted a live game on Twitter.
These broadcasts will continue throughout the remaining of this season in the hope that the club can market itself both to the rest of the country and abroad while still maintaining their community-friendly approach. Other innovations include that the tickets can be purchased via the Eventbride app, fans can travel to games by using Uber and once they arrive at the stadium, they can treat themselves to local beer and food from food and beverage trucks.
It sounds as promising as it gets so far, but the team will definitely need to produce the goods on the field as well in order to keep the crowds interested. To help that goal, the club was able to recruit a number of experienced players on international level like Cristian Portilla, Kenny Teijsse, Romauld Peiser, Reiner Ferreira as well as former LA Galaxy midfield dynamo Michael Stephens who’s also the biggest name in the squad.
The Deltas play their next game on the 9th of April and make no mistake that we’ll definitely tune in to watch.
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