A friendly wager at the Gremio Lusitano club among friends led to team president Celso Correia to form the Western Mass Pioneers Soccer Team, which became officially founded in 1997.
The Western Mass Pioneers started playing in 1998 in the USL D-3 Pro League. In 1999, they won the USL D-3 Pro League championship. In 2005 they reigned as the regular season champions, were USL Second Division finalists, and hosted the National Championship match. In 2010, the Pioneers became an amateur team in the USL PDL, to focus on developing future professional soccer players. The Pioneers also operate numerous youth camps here and throughout western Massachusetts.
All home games are played at the Soccer Capital of New England, Lusitano Stadium. Modeled after European stadiums, the only soccer specific stadium in New England is located in the heart of Ludlow, providing the casual fan as well as the soccer aficionado the ultimate in soccer viewing as spectators feel they are part of the action. Tasty foods such as our famous ‘bifana’ (Portuguese pork sandwich) and other refreshments are available at the stadium pavilion during soccer games.
The goal of the organization is to present soccer and the game day experience here at the highest levels possible to the entire New England area, while at the same time showcasing local and exceptional talent and to provide them opportunities to advance through the US Soccer system.
Although considered a small market, the Pioneers consistently rank amongst the top teams in attendance. We hope you can join us for a game!