Kickin' It in Del Mar

San Diego Sockers are back on field

The San Diego Sockers are back, making another run at the heart of San Diego soccer fans, reports

Featuring a number of veterans from previous incarnations, the Sockers played Sunday night for the first time in their new home, the Del Mar Arena, beating Tijuana's club La Cabana, 11-5.  The exhibition game, staged for the San Diego County Fair, drew a curious yet boisterous crowd, who watched as indoor soccer returned to San Diego and the team with 10 championship banners again took the field.

Well, there was a little problem there. Only eight of the banners could be located by the team, said head coach Phil Salvagio after the game. Two are missing and unaccounted for. They hope to find the missing two in time for the Nov. 7 regular season opener, when the Sockers join the Premier Arena Soccer League.

The eight banners were hanging in the rafters of the new roof on the Del Mar Arena, which has been renovated into a 3,543 seat open-ended venue that seems perfectly San Diegan. On a nice night, it will be a beautiful and fun place to watch a fast-paced, exciting indoor soccer game. The team plans to have a beer garden in the north end of the arena, with booths and concessions in the south end. It may get chilly in the winter on some nights, but that should only boost the sales of the team sweaters, said Salvagio.

"I don't think you can beat this," Salvagio said. "It is unbelievable. It plays well for us -- a 3,500 seat arena -- and I looked around and saw about 2,000 people here today. It was a good atmosphere, and loud on the field.  We were pleased."


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