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il Canale Fields an Old Guys Soccer Team -- The Gringos

Tossing pizza dough or soccer balls are part of the Italian heritage.

So, without a second thought, il Canale ristorante & pizzeria Napoletana in Georgetown jumped at the chance to sponsor a Washington-area international soccer team this season. The new team, called The Gringos, kicked off its spring-summer season with 11 other league teams in the Greater DC Metropolitan area.

il Canale’s logo, a wave depicting the C&O Canal, is on the blue shirts of players, along with an “Italia” banner. The Gringos team is made up of guys who are at least 50 years old and north of that. il Canale is located mere steps from the canal on 31st Street NW.

“It is a natural for us to support an international soccer team,” said il Canale owner Joe Farruggio. “After all, we are Italian -- and soccer is woven into our very souls.”

More often than not, il Canale’s TV over the bar is tuned into live football games being played in Italy, Spain, England, South of the Border, or wherever.

The website is It’s all in Spanish. But English-only fans can still get the drift of where/when the games are played.