published Monday, February 28th, 2011

Local ticket sales strong for MLS game

Advanced ticket sales for Sunday’s Major League Soccer exhibition between the Columbus Crew and New England Revolution have already topped the 1,000 mark, Chattanooga Football Club board member Sheldon Grizzle said.

The preseason game at Finley Stadium will be the biggest that Chattanooga FC has been involved with in its three-year existence. Putting on the event are CFC and Atlanta-based soccer promoter Scott Spencer.

“We’re over 1,000, which to the general public might not sound that awesome,” Grizzle said, “but the most we’ve ever pre-sold for a game was 650, which was for the Atlas game last year.”

A crowd of 6,317 attended CFC’s game last May against the U-23 team from F.C. Atlas, of Guadalajara, Mexico. Grizzle said Sunday’s game could draw more than 5,000 fans to Finley, which hasn’t hosted an MLS team since the Crew visited in the 1998 U.S. Open Cup.

Chattanooga FC will open its third season on May 13 at Atlanta FC. The club was hoping to play an exhibition against a Mexican squad, as it did last year, but couldn’t get a deal done, Grizzle said.

There are two new teams in the National Premier Soccer League’s Southeast division, the Georgia Revolution and the Knoxville Force. CFC’s home debut is May 21 against the Force.

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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