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AC St. Louis: Five Unanswered Questions

On December 8, 2009, a news conference was held at the Soccer Park in Fenton, Mo. announcing the name of our new soccer club, AC St. Louis.  Owner Jeff Cooper also introduced the club’s new coach, Claude Anelka; the Director of Player Development Francisco Filho, and the clubs’s logo and team colors.  In the ten weeks since that date, we have learned the club’s schedule, ticket pricing and seating information, the uniform sponsor (Nike), and the names of 17 players who have been signed for the 2010 season, headed by former MLS star Steve Ralston.  But with less than seven weeks to go before the April 10 season opener in Carolina, there are still five major unanswered  questions that fans are asking.

Question One:  Where’s Our Goalkeeper?

Of the 17 players under contract (4 St. Louisans, 7 other Americans, 3 Frenchmen, and one player each from Brazil, Trinidad and Armenia) most are midfielders and defenders.  Although there is a world class goalkeeper who calls Soccer Park home, she is Hope Solo and she plays for the Athletica.  Who will man the nets for ACSTL?  So far, no goalkeeper has been signed.  I am aware that former KC Wizards keeper Kevin Hartman was involved in a contract dispute with management and that he is no longer in their plans with KC  having signed a new keeper from Denmark.  Also, NY Red Bulls keeper Danny Cepero was recently waived and is still available.   Some fans of ACSTL Fanatic blog have advocated Alec Dufty, the former University of Evansville star who played in one game for  the NY Red Bulls in relief of Cepero last season, and SIU-E product Greg Cook,  who took part in ACSTL’s invitational tryout.  The unanswered question remains.  Who will be between the posts when we open in Carolina April 10th,

Question Two:  Will ACSTL Games be Televised?

No announcement has come forth from either the club or the league concerning television coverage of ACSTL or other league games.  In the past, Fox Soccer Channel has offered one nationally televised USL game weekly.  Since the majority of the teams in our USSF Second Division league were formerly USL members, its seems likely that there will be a continuation of this format on FSC.   Last year USL games were also streamed live on the internet, and according to a BigSoccer.com NASL forum thread, that is again a real possibility for viewing USSF/Div.2 games in 2010.  Locally, KPLR-TV broadcast two St. Louis Athletica games last summer.   It would be fantastic if they would broadcast at least a few ACSTL and Athletica games in 2010.

Question Three:  What will ACSTL Uniforms Look Like?

Nike has been announced as official sponsor of ACSTL and the team colors are green, yellow and white.  An unveiling of the new uniforms will be coming in March.  For an idea of possible styles, again check BigSoccer.com’s ACSTL forum for a thread on kit mock ups for some interesting interpretations of what our new uniforms may look like.

Question Four:  Will St. Louis Host a US Open Cup Game?

The US Open Cup competition has been in existence since 1914.  Like the European Cup competitions, amateur and semi-pro clubs compete with full professional clubs for glory.  I would imagine, given the size of our market, that ACSTL would be given serious consideration for hosting an Open Cup game.

And Finally:  What Teams will ACSTL Play in Preseason?

On a previous posting here on the ACSTL Fanatic, Dave Trotter wrote about a possible home and home series with the KC Wizards.  Considering the savings in travel costs and the natural in state rivalry, that would be ideal, and it seems like that is going to happen, barring an MLS strike.  Many professional teams in the U.S. also play local college teams as part of their preseason training, so would St. Louis University or SIU-E be possibilities?  We earlier posted information from the UMKC website that they were to play ACSTL here on March 12.  The St. Louis Lions of the USL premier developmental league would be a fun rivalry, and  a game against the Chicago Fire, the MLS  team that features former St.Louis University and Fulham star Brian McBride, is made to order.

ACSTL has accomplished a lot in a short period of time.  We look forward to finding the answers to these five questions.


3 Responses

  1. Nice work Gerry. Interesting questions. If the club was smart they would have someone do a Q&A once a week with the Fanatic.

  2. Thanks for the kind words, Doug. We’re trying to get some interviews and things going, and we appreciate you reading the Fanatic and please…feel free to comment anytime..

  3. We will have interviews from AC St. Louis and around the league starting next week.

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