HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Soccer fans came together for Hartford Athletic’s home opener.
The team, that’s only 4-years-old, kicked-off the season filled with momentum after a rocky start amid the pandemic.
Fans arrived early for the game to enjoy food, drinks, and even kick around a ball.
Kevin and Connor Fleming of Longmeadow, Mass. became fans of the professional soccer team during its inception and it inspired Kevin as a coach.
“I’s been really fun to watch how amazed our kids have been when they come out and watch them and they get close to the players, they watch the skill level,” Kevin said. “And honestly as a coach, I’ve been able to learn some drills just watching them warm up.”
Hundreds of other families and friends showed up dressed in blue and green, ready to cheer.
“It doesn’t compare to be able to just watch something on TV, just to be in there with all the energy going on,” season-ticket holder Lynn Graf of Avon said. “It’s just a good time.”
While the co-owner of the team, Bruce Mandell, said Hartford Athletic has had a rough start, things are starting to look up.
“It’s been tricky coming through two years of COVID, and we’re really, it’s almost like we’re a start-up again this year,” Mandell said.
It’s obvious Hartford Athletic already has a strong fan base, and that will only continue to grow.
“I hope for a good season, lots of close games,” Connor said. “But I hope Hartford comes out on top.”
The team will play its next match back home in Hartford on Thursday.