Coach Jason Moore (left) and player Theo Booras of Lowell, at a recent Greater Lowell United Football Club practice.SUN/JULIA MALAKIESun staff photos can
Coach Jason Moore (left) and player Theo Booras of Lowell, at a recent Greater Lowell United Football Club practice. SUN/JULIA MALAKIE

Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site.

LOWELL -- The Greater Lowell United Football Club will kick off its inaugural season in the National Premier Soccer League with a game against the Brooklyn Italians at Cawley Stadium on Saturday.

Game time is 8:05 p.m.

Greater Lowell United FC, an NSPL expansion club that was co-founded by Tim Melican and Manny Andrade, has been practicing since January. The team has been playing well in the preseason, and everyone associated with the club is looking forward to opening night.

"I'm very excited to get going," said Andrade, a former Lowell High and UMass Lowell soccer player. "All the late nights and long days. All the hard work and planning. All the hurdles we've gone through to get to this point. They're ready to play out on the field and I can't wait to see it. I'll take a few seconds to take it all in and enjoy the moment and then I'll get back to work."

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids and available at the gate.

Greater Lowell United FC's roster consists primarily of current college players, former local high school/college players in their early to mid-20s and veteran players, some of whom played overseas.

None of the players on Greater Lowell United FC are paid so the college players can maintain their amateur status. There are clubs in the NPSL, which is broken up into geographic regions that include the Northeast, South, Midwest and West, that pay players.


Greater Lowell United FC will also field developmental clubs in the Massachusetts State Soccer League and Bay State Soccer League.

Greater Lowell United FC head coach Jason Moore is a former first overall pick in the MLS draft out of the University of Virginia by D.C. United. Moore won an MLS title with D.C. United and played for five MLS teams, including the New England Revolution.

There are several locals in Greater Lowell United FC's program, including Theo Booras (Lowell), Matt Sequeira (Lowell), Johany Gallego (Lowell) and Zach Rowell (Haverhill).

"Everything has been going well," said Andrade. "I'm real happy with the way the team has performed in the preseason.

"We've been able to work in guys in our preseason games that we wanted to see play. This will help us define their roles and we'll know what they can do for the club once the regular season starts."

Follow Carmine Frongillo on Twitter and Tout @cwfrongi