Galveston soccer team joins NPSL

Pirate SC to begin play in new Texas Division of NPSL in fall

Although Texas
has always been known as a hotbed for American football, nowadays a different
type of fútbol is gaining ground. The
Galveston Pirate Soccer Club is the latest team to join the ranks of the
National Premier Soccer League, a semi-professional league which constitutes
the fourth level of soccer in the United States soccer pyramid. Galveston expects to play in a new Texas Division, which would also include The Woodlands-based Regals FC and teams in Beaumont and Corpus Christi.

At the forefront of the organization is Brendan Keyes, a
long-time player and coach from Dublin,
Ireland. Keyes came to the United States in 1984 after successful
stints with Irish clubs Home Farm F.C. and Stella Marris F.C. Keyes also brings a wealth of coaching
experience having spent time with the Houston Eagles, Houston Force, and most recently the Houston
Hurricanes.

Keyes, the head coach and general manager of the club, is excited to
lead the new franchise and feels confident it will have the lasting success
that eluded previous Galveston
teams.

“Without other professional sports franchises in Galveston, I know the fans
will respond positively to our team,” he said. “Down the road, I would love to
bring teams such as the Houston Dynamo to our stadium for a series of
exhibitions.”

Galveston will play in Kermit Courville Stadium, a roughly 10,000-seat high school football stadium run by the Galveston ISD. A proposal for a new stadium for the Galveston ISD will be voted on in May.

The National Premier Soccer League was originally founded in
2003 as the Men’s Professional Soccer League. The most notable alum is Roger Espinoza, midfielder for the Kansas City
Wizards. The Honduran native and World
Cup hopeful spent the 2006 season with the Arizona Sahuaros of the NPSL before
being drafted 11th overall by the Kansas City Wizards in 2008.

Keyes hopes his players can have similar success
stories.

“My goal is to put a good product on the field,” he said. “A lot of the teams we will play against have
been in the league seven years. I would
be happy if my team finished .500 our first season and then improved from there.”

Keyes will hold his first set of tryouts May 8, with seven
additional tryouts to follow. The
Galveston Pirate season begins this October.