FC Motown head coach Sacir Hot on Dilly Duka (above): “With Dilly, you roll out the ball to him and let him be Dilly, the creative Dilly from MLS.” (Photo courtesy of MLS)

By Michael Lewis

FrontRowSoccer.com Editor

Dilly Duka admits he hasn’t made up his mind if he will return to professional soccer.

The Montville, N.J. native likes where he is right now — with FC Motown.

Duka, who was released by the Red Bulls last season, recently signed with the National Premier Soccer League team.

“FC Motown is just an up and coming organization in North Jersey that has an ownership that is super supportive and super passionate about soccer,” he said. “I’m happy to take part and be a part of this. It’s something that I see myself being more involved with in the future.”

The 28-year-old midfielder hasn’t ruled out returning to Major League Soccer, but the conditions would have to be right.

“You know, anything is possible,” he said. “Returning to MLS would lead to a different location. It would just have to make sense for me and my wife and our future family. Everything has to make sense.”

On Wednesday night, Duka and his FC Motown teammates will take on the Red Bulls Under-23 team in the first round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup at Rangers Stadium at Drew University in Madison, N.J.

“I think it’s going to be a really tough competition especially with the Red Bulls management and how they try to build the first team style and the youth team style,” he said. “It’s just good exposure for us to compete with them.”

And definitely good preparation for the NPSL season for the young players on FC Motown, which will host FC Monmouth in its season opener May 19.

“Yeah, exactly,” Duka said. “How we compete, how far we go, it’s just a bonus.”

Duka brings eight years and 141 regular-season games of MLS experience to FC Motown, after playing with Columbus Crew SC, Chicago Fire, Montreal Impact and the Red Bulls.

“With Dilly, you roll out the ball to him and let him be Dilly, the creative Dilly from MLS,” head coach Sacir Hot said. “It’s not so much managing him. I’m not trying to teach him how to play the game. I tell him what system we play in and what I expect from him a little bit tactically. The rest is on him. I expect and I’m sure he will take over games. It’s nice having someone who that can individually take over games, can win you games.”

As he did in a 4-3 win over Jackson in a New Jersey State Cup semifinal April 28. Duka scored the game-winner with two minutes remaining as the veteran midfielder climaxed FC Motown’s comeback from 2-0 and 3-1 deficit.

“It was a pretty wild game,” Duka said. “The crowd was 200-250 people. The crowd was definitely entertained. There were a lot of goals. The other team was definitely competitive. They had some talent. It shows you where the amateur league is at, how a couple of organizations take it really serious.”

Before we call it a story, yes, Duka had to be asked about the Bud Light commercials and “Dilly, Dilly.”

“I always get random texts, especially when it came out last year,” he said with a chuckle. “My friends and family loved it. They loved the ‘Dilly, Dilly’ Bud Light commercials. I think it’s a funny commercial. It’s hilarious. Not just because it’s my name. I think Bud Light has done well with those commercials.”

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Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Guardian.com. Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of BigAppleSoccer.com. He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at Amazon.com.