Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Lockhart Stadium

Lockhart Stadium Particulars Nearly two decades after the likes of Pelé, George Best and Franz Beckenbauer trod the turf of Lockhart Stadium, the hallowed ground made a spectacular return to the national spotlight on March 15, 1998, when Carlos Valderrama and the Miami Fusion returned top-flight professional soccer to South Florida in a historic matchup with Marco Etcheverry and D. C. United.

Over the course of just three months before opening day, Fusion Investor-Operator Kenneth A. Horowitz spent nearly $5 million - with no taxpayer dollars - to transform Lockhart from a modest high school athletics facility into the nation's premier professional-soccer stadium. The result - a soccer-specific stadium created at a fraction of the cost of a new facility - set a new standard for MLS venues, creating a uniquely "fan-friendly" environment, where the front row seats are only 16 feet from the action.

Lockhart has been an integral part of South Florida soccer for more than 20 years. Between 1977 and 1983, it was the home of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, one of the most successful clubs in U.S. Soccer history during the days of the NASL. Almost 20 years after Lockhart hosted two Olympic qualifying game for the U.S. National Team in 1980, international soccer returned the stadium when D. C. United achieved perhaps the most significant victory in the history of U.S. professional soccer. United, the CONCACAF champion, knocked off Brazilian and South American Champion Vasco da Gama at Lockhart, 2-0 (2-1 aggregate), Dec. 5, 1998, to capture the InterAmerican Cup, the club championship of the Western Hemisphere. A month later, the U.S. Women's National Team thrashed Portugal, 6-0, with Michelle Akers scoring her 100th career goal. In February, the U.S. Men's National Team downed Chile, 2-1, with Wortmann assisting Bruce Arena and Leo Cullen making his first-ever appearance with the full National Team.

Originally built in 1959 as an athletic facility for local high schools, the stadium is part of a sports complex that also includes Fort Lauderdale Stadium. Lockhart is conveniently located just west of I-95, between Commercial Blvd. and Cypress Creek Rd. Lockhart is owned by the City of Fort Lauderdale.