5 questions with Louisville City FC's director of media relations

5 questions with Louisville City FC's director of media relations

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - This Saturday Louisville's professional soccer team, Louisville City FC, kicks off its season with a home game at Slugger Field against Saint Louis. It should be perfect for the 2 p.m. game with temperatures in the 70s. 

Louisville City FC games have already gained a reputation as being fun, with fans that really get into it. Last year the home games averaged 7,200 fans, up a bit from 2015. It ranked third in a 28-team league. When the team hosted FC Cincinnati they had a record attendance topping 10,000.  

If you have yet to make it to a game, you might want to fit one in your schedule. 

Here are my five questions with Louisville City FC's director of media relations Jonathan Lintner:

1. When you look at the schedule, is there a game you must make?
The games everyone has circled are both against FC Cincinnati, our top rival that comes to town for the first time this year on July 15. If you're headed out to Forecastle instead that night, Cincy's back again on Aug. 12.

2. How has having a professional soccer team changed the soccer culture in Louisville?
We signed our first Louisville native, Richard Ballard, heading into this season. He's a perfect example of a player who grew up without a dream of playing for a hometown pro team, because there wasn't one. Now kids can have that goal and see through Richard it's possible. More generally, I think we're still the cool new thing in town, and we've shown a lot of people the whole thinking that soccer is a boring or snobby international sport just isn't true.

3.What can someone who has never been expect?
It's a different experience from what people are used to at Slugger Field. I like to say that, given we play from March through October, it's a great way for college football fans to get their fix during the summer. We have a decent tailgating scene in the lot directly West of the stadium, and once we kick off, there's a section for everyone. Fans in the "Supporter Zone" right behind the goal stand and chant the entire game. On the other side you'll find families and the crowd looking for a more relaxing time.

4. A stadium just for Louisville City FC is always a topic of conversation. How does the team work toward that?
Our board of directors meets weekly with city officials on the project. Everyone wants to know where it will be, and we'll get there - hopefully soon. We want to get it right, and the feeling in our front office is
extremely positive. Our coach, James O'Connor, recently signed a new contract good through 2020, which is the year we anticipate opening a stadium. His commitment to us speaks volumes.

5. Who are the new players we should keep an eye out for?
Having already mentioned Richard Ballard, I have to go first with Devon Williams, a new midfielder who goes by "Speedy" - and you'll quickly see why. He played last season for the New York Red Bulls II, who won the USL championship, and has experience playing for Jamaica's national team. There's also Brian Ownby, a midfielder who left his hometown club, the Richmond Kickers, to join us. He's a veteran midfielder and a great guy off the field.