Soccer Down Here
On This Date in Atlanta Soccer History: August 9
1966: The Atlanta Braves received ownership rights to the first professional soccer team in Atlanta history. The team was part of the National Professional Soccer League and slated to begin play next year. Braves owner Bill Bartholomay said:
"This is a new venture and we are just feeling our way now, but we have to believe that it has much potential and we are very happy to have a part in it."
(Chiefs' player-manager Phil Woosnam is not happy with the referees against St. Louis on August 9, 1967 at Atlanta Stadium. Photo from the Atlanta Constitution.)
1967: The Atlanta Chiefs lost at Atlanta Stadium to the St. Louis Stars in a National Professional Soccer League match. Emment Kapengwe scored his fifth goal of the season in the loss for Atlanta, Howard Riley also scored for the Chiefs. The Chiefs outshot St. Louis 20-7 and committed 29 fouls to St. Louis' 4. Down to eight men after three players were sent off and trailing 3-0, the Chiefs scored twice late to make the finish very interesting.
1968: Kaizer Motaung and Delroy Scott scored for the Chiefs in their 3-0 win at Varsity Stadium against the host Toronto Falcons. Atlanta also benefited from an own goal. 4,228 were on hand in Toronto for the match.
1978: Reports by Al Smith in the Atlanta Constitution declared that professional soccer could be returning to Atlanta after a 5-year absence. Dick Cecil and Al Thornwell were exploring a purchase of the NASL Colorado Caribous.
1981: With an opportunity to win the NASL Southern Division on the, the Chiefs lost 2-0 at RFK Stadium to the Washington Diplomats. 6,003 fans were there to see Clive Heywood and Trevor Hebberd score for the home team.
1989: A group of Atlanta businessmen were awarded a franchise in the American Indoor Soccer Association to be called the Atlanta Attack. Ron Terwilliger was the majority owner of the team that played their home games at The Omni. Team president and minority owner Bob Moreland said:
"Soccer is coming at Atlanta two ways -- the international appeal and from the local playgrounds, grammar schools, junior high and high schools and colleges. We'd like to give kids who play soccer a place to play professionally. They don't have to grow up to be placekickers on a football team anymore. They can be pro soccer players."
1998: The Atlanta Ruckus defeated the Jacksonville Cyclones in front of 487 fans at Adams Stadium in A-League action. Mo Suri and Marcos Roberto each scored a brace, Stilian Shiskov added the fifth goal.