Buffalo's International Team: FC Buffalo

Posted at 3:27 PM, Jun 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-21 00:13:38-04

There's no shortage of culture and flair on FC Buffalo.

"The nature of the team really reflects the nature of the United States in the fact that it's a melting pot," Cameron Hogg, who is from New Zealand, said.

He continued, "You're going to attract the best from all nations around the world and you're going to attract those types of guys that want to play in that type of environment as well.”

"We've had Trinidad and Tobago, Nicaragua -- players from just about everywhere," added co-owner Nick Mendola.  "Ghana -- you get to learn a lot about new foods. It's a blast."

Sure, there can be a culture shock coming from overseas, but the City of Good Neighbors also make the Blizters feel right at home.

"Buffalo as anybody knows, is a small community. Everyone knows everyone and they say the same kind of thing in New Zealand," Hogg said.  

"They say there is two degrees of separation for 4.5 million people. So, if you know someone, you know someone and it's basically got our whole country covered and it's a similar kind of feel in Buffalo."

"It's really my first time here, but it seems like I've been living here the past 10 years if you know what I mean," Akean Shackelford, who is from Jamaica, said.  "Everyone just seems to be like family."

Mostly college players, the goal is raise their profile and improve their games over the summer as they look to achieve their ultimate dream of becoming pro soccer players -- all while being a part of unforgettable experience with teammates and fans in the Queen City.

"I don't regret it one bit because I've had such a good experience," Jordan Sinclair said. 

Sinclair, who is from Scotland, plays college soccer in Alabama but joined FC Buffalo for the summer.

"I met so many great people and so many cities that I know I'd never have the opportunity to back home," he said. "I'm so grateful."

"When strangers come together as family that makes you much more comfortable and you can express the way you really want to express yourself,” Shackelford added. “I find it really amusing and it's wonderful."

FC Buffalo's next home game is June 30th when they host the Erie Commodores.  Game time is set  7:00 p.m.