Striking Good – NASL First Week


There’s another league in the United States soccer system. It’s not quite a pyramid, because we don’t believe in promotion/relegation here, oh and hi Tinfoil Ted, because it won’t work at all.

There is also some doubt to pretty much all USA fans, that was is really the second division here in the states, is the NASL, or the USL? So keep that in mind when you read about soccer in this country. Also the NASL does the annoying Spring Season, fall season schedule. So in the Spring Season there’s only nine matches because of the World Cup.

Of course the glory matchup of the weekend was the rematch of last year’s Soccer Bowl (Championship Game) between New York Cosmos and the Atlanta Wynalda’s, err sorry Silverbacks. The “manager” of the Silverbacks is their technical director, and spends more time on television calling matches for Fox Soccer than doing his real job. The Cosmos beat them 4-0, with Carlos Mendes getting a brace in the game.

The next match, pitted two cities against each other that are vying for the last spot (we think the last one) in the MLS expansion in Minnesota United and San Antonio Scorpions. Minnesota won 2-0 with goals coming from Christian Ramirez and Kevin Venegas. While Minnesota United may not be the club from Minnesota getting the bump up, if the MLS goes into San Antonio, they will bump up the Scorpions, because of the soccer specific stadium.

One of the most iconic franchises in the soccer system is Tampa Bay Rowdies, they were great in the last NASL, and during this NASL they’ve been very good. They tied FC Edmonton 1-1, on an own goal from Edmonton defender Kareem Moses, and a goal from Tomi Ameobi in the 88th minute.

You wouldn’t call this the most anticipated match in Indiana this year, since there’s always a college basketball game that’s worth it in the state. However, in soccer the debut of the Indy Eleven before 11,000 fans against the Carolina Railhawks. They tied 1-1, with a goal on the Eleven side Mike Ambersley, scored the first ever goal for the Eleven with 43 minutes left in the match. The Railhawks came back to hit a goal at the fifty minute mark as forward Zack Schilawski.

Yet another iconic club in the sphere of soccer in the states kicked off their NASL season, was the Fort Lauderdale Strikers. In their heyday they had George Best and Gordon Banks. They kicked off at Lockhart Stadium against expansion Ottawa Fury FC. There were goals by Rafael Alves and Dave King to drive the Strikers to a 2-0 win. The Strikers have former St. Pauli striker Marius Ebbers in their starting eleven also.

If you’re not an MLS Fan, don’t worry there’s always another match in another league for a very low price and a great atmosphere. While we never might be like the Europeans have, it’s a great time to be a soccer fan in the states.


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