CFC Azul in New Britain to play Worcester Hydra

Coming off a tie in their previous game, CFC Azul took to the pitch at Willow Park in New Britain, to play host to the Hydra of Worcester Ma.

Heading into the match, Azul were down four of their regular starters, most notably, their leading goal scorer, Ryan Kinne, who was called up to play for the New England Revolution’s reserve team, but to their credit, they took to the pitch without excuses.

But, having played the day prior and without key players, the team looked a bit sluggish and it showed. Only 12 minutes into the first half, Azul’s goalkeeper, Matt Sangeloty, took his eyes off the ball during a pass-back play and if it weren’t for his quick reaction, to run back and save the ball from crossing the goal-line, Azul would have been down a goal and Sangeloty would have been truly embarrassed.

However, three-minutes later, Sangeloty’s blunder and miraculous recovery didn’t matter as Hydra’s striker and leading goal scorer, Junior Alencar, put the ball passed Sangeloty and into the back of the net for the 1-0 lead.

Playing down a goal, Azul picked up their effort and equalized in the 36th minute off a set-piece, headed in by Eddie Floyd.

At the half, the score was tied, but as Azul came out for the second, their energy sank, the desperation they played with to tie the game was gone and Hydra took advantage.

In the 64th minute, off a corner kick, Derek McCaffrey headed the ball straight through two defenders and passed Sangeloty for the 2-1 Hydra lead and though there was a late Azul scare when captain Paul Templeton chipped the ball, goal-bound, over the head of Hydra’s goalkeeper from mid-field–the ball hit the crossbar and bounced back into play allowing Hydra to hold onto the lead and eventually win the match, 2-1.

With the loss, Azul’s record drops to 2-3-3, but the good news–Azul has the chance to rebound quickly as they play June 13th, in Boston, against the Victory.

CFC Azul, Soccer is back in Town

Finally, soccer has come back, to Connecticut.

Yes, it is true, soccer is back in the state, in the form of CFC Azul(Azul, meaning blue in portuguese), a first-year club playing its inaugural season in the United States Soccer League’s (USL) umbrella league, The Professional Developmental League (PDL).

CFC Azul

The Club Azul crest is posted with the permission of the Club.
Image links back to Club Azul’s website

“This league is basically a way for young soccer players, mostly college soccer players to stay in shape during their off-season and to get a better understanding of how a professional club is operated,” said Blue Milita(Club Azul’s fan group name) member, Robert McNicholas.

Two members of Club Azul’s supporting group–The Blue Militia.
On the left in the black shirt–Mike Landona.
On the right in the blue shirt–Robert McNicholas.

“Either way, no matter what league the club is playing in, we(now speaking for the group) are just glad soccer is back, period,” added McNicholas.

Heading into their first home match of the season (though, in reality, Club Azul doesn’t have a home stadium, not yet anyway, so, on this day, their home game was being played at East Haven High School) CFC Azul were 0-1-2, meaning, they were winless and desperate for win against their main rival, Boston Victory.

With the added motivation of playing a rival, it didn’t take long, four minutes to be exact, for CFC Azul’s forward and leading goal-scorer, Ryan Kinne, to put in the first goal of the game and claim a second goal, six minutes later, to make it 2-0 going into half-time.

The first half was very exciting for the fans and during the half, the fans were kept entertained by CFC Azul’s mascot, Mr. Blue.

Mr. Blue dancing around in front of the spectators while also interacting with The Blue Militia during half-time.

As for the second half–with the two-goal lead in the first, Azul were almost guaranteed the victory, but that didn’t stop CFC Azul from wanting to score a few more insurance goals.

First, there was a penalty kick goal scored by Markus Naglestad.

Then, there were two goals by Mario DiMecili followed by the final goal of the night by Sony Narro–final score, 6-0, in favor of the home side. The victory gave CFC Azul, not just their first win of the young season, but, the first win in franchise history.

“I am happy to be apart of this club’s first franchise victory, but it was a great team win,” said DiMecili after the game.

CFC Azul’s Head Coach, David Kelly, summed up his club’s performance best, “I didn’t expect six goals…to win 6-0 is an aberration.”