This Week: Republic to play last game at Hughes Stadium
05/12/2014 12:00 AM
05/12/2014 12:23 AM
On Saturday, the new but already wildly popular Sacramento Republic FC soccer team will play the LA Galaxy II. The game will be the last the team plays in Hughes Stadium, at Sacramento City College, before decamping to its own facility at Cal Expo.
The team’s first two home games at Hughes have been packed, drawing crowds larger than those at a typical Kings NBA game these days, despite the fact that the Republic plays in a minor league. More than 20,000 fans came to the first match, and the crowd at the second was only slightly smaller. Fans drove, walked from nearby neighborhoods and arrived on light-rail trains.
Those crowds will, by necessity, be cut by more than half at Cal Expo, where the $3 million temporary facility has just 8,000 seats. It’s not easy to walk there, and there’s no light-rail access. But the team’s backers have said they can’t stay at Hughes, because it isn’t wide enough to meet the standards of professional soccer. They hope to use the strong ticket sales to convince Major League Soccer to locate a franchise in Sacramento. The ultimate goal: a new stadium downtown.
– Mary Lynne Vellinga
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Info: (916) 278-4323
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