Coming off an impressive 4-2 victory over Global United, the Dayton Dutch Lions take on the Cincinnati Kings in this weekend’s Premier Development League Great Lakes Conference opener at Miami Valley South Stadium. The atmosphere was electric with nearly 3,000 Dayton area soccer fans turning out to support the Lions and the supporters group, the Orange Legion, providing a variety of chants during the match. The Lions look to build on this momentum this weekend as they open regular season play.
The Cincinnati Kings are the Premier Development League side of Kings Soccer Academy in Cincinnati. The Kings entered the United Soccer League Second Division in 2005 under the ownership of Yacoub Abdallahi, an entrepreneur from North Africa and graduate of Northern Kentucky University. The Kings began respectably finishing in the middle of the table in their inaugural season and reaching the semi-finals of the playoffs in 2006, missing the championship match on a 2-1 aggregate loss to the Richmond Kickers. The 2007 season was a different story however. Managing only two wins in their first ten matches, the Kings went on to finish 8th in the table and, for the third consecutive season, their US Open Cup run lasted only one match. Prior to the start of the 2008 season, the Kings announced that they would take a voluntary relegation to the Premier Development League.
Despite high expectations, the Kings first season in the PDL did not go exactly as planned. They struggled early in the season losing five out of their first seven matches. The Kings found themselves out of playoff contention by mid-August and went on to finish the season in fourth place, 30 points behind league-leaders Michigan Bucks. 2009 saw yet another disappointing end for the Kings. Managing just four wins, the Cincinnati side finished 8th in the PDL table.
The Dayton Dutch Lions will be looking to ensure their Cincinnati rivals 2010 season picks up right where the 2009 season ended for the Kings. The match is scheduled for 7:30pm, Saturday May 8th, at Miami Valley South Stadium in Bellbrook. Tickets may be purchased online, through Ticketweb or at the gate. The Lions will be celebrating Ohio Kids Day with free admission for all children under 15 years of age. You can find more details about Kids Day and the Dayton Dutch Lions Kids Club here.