Phoenix FC Wolves ready for franchise debut

The Phoenix FC Wolves USL Pro soccer franchise takes the field for the first time at 7:30 p.m. Saturday against the Los Angeles Blues in Fullerton, Calif.

While Phoenix is making its USL Pro debut, the Blues are in their third season in the league. They missed the playoffs last year while finishing eighth in the league standings.

Phoenix, under the direction of coach David Robertson, has spent the past several months asembling a team of players with professional and international experience, promising young players from the local area and a trio of Brazilians. The team leaders for the Wolves are expected to be former Major League Soccer goalkeeper Andrew Weber and former Scottish Premier League player Darren Mackie, who was the first player signed by the franchise.

The rest of the projected starting lineup includes forwards Aaron King, Peabo Doue and Donny Toia, midfielders Netinho, Diego Faria and Anthony Obodai, and defenders Renan Boufleur, Cyprian Hedric and Scott Morrison.

This is the first of two meetings between the teams, with a return matchup in Tempe on April 14. Phoenix’s home opener, at Sun Devil Soccer Stadium, will be on Saturday, March 30, against VSI Tampa Bay.