“SoccerSam” Fantauzzo: “Utica and Rochester have issues. We may have to start a little later, be on the road for most of the games.” (Photo courtesy of the Rochester Lancers)
Salvatore “SoccerSam” Fantauzzo has given a few more details on how the upcoming Major Arena Soccer League season might pan out.
During stream telecast of the MASL all-star game in Independence, Mo. Saturday night, the Rochester Lancers owner said his team will play in a division with three other teams, will play a minimum of 12 and a maximum of 24 matches during the regular season and might not necessarily use the Dome Arena as its home base during the 2020-21 season.
The Lancers will play in a division with Utica City FC, Harrisburg Heat and Baltimore Blast, Fantauzzo said.
“We’re all ready to play the east. That’s our group,” he said during the telecast. “We’re going play our games with or without fans. We’re hoping with fans, but it’s up to the governors. It’s up to the politicians on what’s going to happen.”
That’s because every state has its own regulations about COVID-19 protocols, and they can change quite quickly because of the nature of the spread of the virus.
The MASL has allowed teams to start as early as this month, although some or many clubs could kick off their season in January. No schedule has been released yet.
Fantauzzo indicated the Lancers and other teams could wind up having more early games on the road or even for the entire season.
“I think cities that could have games are going have games right away,” he said. “In Florida right now it’s like COVID doesn’t exist for some reason.
I think you’re going see normal games starting to go in Florida … as of January for sure. Other states obviously are issues. Utica and Rochester have issues. We may have to start a little later, be on the road for most of the games. We’re going to have a season. We have the best owners united in the history of this sport. We’re all united, we’re all together we’re going to make it all happen for the good of our fans for the good of our sponsors.”
Fantauzzo said the Lancers will play. It just depends on where.
“It may not be our normal arena,” he said. “It maybe will be a youth arena. We can play somewhere. We’re not sure its going to be with fans.”
When asked what his goals were for the coming season, Fantauzzo replied, “My goal is to get the kids. The fans, the young kids that just love the sport. I have a nephew Dante Cilino, he wanted to be here so bad. Our goal is to entertain these young kids that just fell in love with the sport like I fell in love hen I was 12-years-old, to give them something to watch. to get autographs from [players], to just have role models that they love.
“So maybe they won’t be at the stadium, or the arenas but maybe they can see the games live online, and then fall back in love with that. That’s all we’re trying to do, to get the young kids in love with this sport for many years to come and Keep generations of kids loving this.”