ALLEN -- The Dallas Sidekicks are back. The indoor soccer team that has won four championships (1986-87 MISL, 1993 CISL, 1998 PSA and 2001 WISL) in its storied history returned to play this season in the Professional Arena Soccer League.
There have been plenty of highlights for the Sidekicks en route to leading the PASL's Central Divison including a 21-1 victory over the Texas Strikers that featured four separate hat tricks and a power play goal scored in one second. Under the leadership of general manager and head coach Tatu, the Sidekicks got off to a franchise-best 8-0 start prior to falling 8-7 in a overtime on the road to the Chicago Mustangs.
When we arrived to the Allen Events Center -- for those who have not attended a game or concert at the $52.6 million arena, it is located on the middle of the Village at Allen shopping center between a hotel and two parking garages that are free -- the doors to the arena were opening and fans were piling in to get out of the biting cold wind. Fans of all ages packed the building to see if Dallas could avenge its only loss in hosting Chicago.
“We are thrilled that soccer fans have so readily embraced us back,” Sidekicks majority owner Ronnie Davis said. “We have exceeded our expectations on and off the field, especially when it comes to attendance. We are working hard to continue to grow our fan base throughout DFW.”
The game had the same fan-friendly vibe as a Dallas Mavericks game with music, shirts tossed into the crowd and plenty of action in breaks of the game to keep fans entertained. Of course, the highlight occurred at the beginning of the fourth quarter when the huge crowd who had been distributed balloons, popped them in unison. It is easy to see why the Sidekicks are leading the PASL in attendance in their first season in Allen.
Patrick Shamu scored twice and popular goalie Sagu stopped all but two shots as the Sidekicks beat the Mustangs 6-2. When the game ended, thousands of fans got to meet Tatu, Sagu, midfielder Jamie Lovegrove and other members of the Sidekicks who hung out on the concourse and signed autographs and posed for pictures.
The Sidekicks next home game is Jan. 27 against the undefeated San Diego Sockers. The Sockers are currently riding an American professional sports record 46-game winning streak. For information on tickets, call (214) 550-6130.
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