DETROIT - The start of Detroit Waza Flo's inaugural season in the Major Arena Soccer League begins Saturday, Nov 1, and the team is confident in who they have to mind the net.
The first signing was veteran goalkeeper Vito Lonigro, who played with Waza Flo in the 2011-2012 season before getting injured right before playoffs. Despite his injury, Lonigro was named to the PASL first team honors as he led the team to a 13-3 regular season record.
Coach Costeau Decu is happy that Lonigro is back.
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"I'm excited to see him play at a professional level again. Before he was injured he was the best keeper in the league," said Decu. "Anytime you are out for over a year with an injury it is difficult to come back 100 percent. We were lucky that we had a goalkeeper to take his spot and we could give him time to heal. During tryouts he seemed like his old self and I think he will only improve from here."
Waza Flo is going to be strong in goalkeeping, not only from their veteran but also by adding some international flavor with Italian rookie Matteo Zani. Zani most recently played for Roma Futsal of Italy's Serie A. The futsal game is similar to the arena game with the main differences being that there are no walls in futsal and the game is played on a hardwood floor instead of turf.
"It really isn't all that different, especially for a goalkeeper," said Waza Flo owner Dominic Scicluna. "The futsal game is even quicker than on turf and that can only make Matteo a better fit for us. It really is a funny story on how he got here. He wanted to come play in the states and his agent reached out to me. We were in the market for a goalkeeper and had tryouts coming up so we gave him a chance. He blew us away in the two days we saw him play and knew we needed to see more of him. He doesn't speak much English and plays with his own style but, hey, that's the beauty of Waza soccer."
Both keepers help round out the dynamic squad that Decu and Scicluna have put together this year and will be a big part in making this year's Waza Flo team one to watch within the new league.
Waza takes on the Harrisburg Heat at 7:05 p.m. Saturday at Melvindale Civic Arena (4300 S Dearborn St, Melvindale, MI 48122).
Ticket prices are $12 for adults and $8 for children ages 3-12.
Tickets can be purchased online here.
The full schedule can be found here.
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