USL Division III

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USL Division III
USL D3 logo.png
Founded April 2, 2017; 16 months ago (2017-04-02)
Country United States
Other club(s) from Canada
Confederation CONCACAF
Number of teams 6 (confirmed)
Level on pyramid 3 (proposed)
Domestic cup(s) U.S. Open Cup
Website usld3.com
2019 USL Division III season

United Soccer League Division III (USL D3) is a professional men's soccer league in the United States that will begin its inaugural season in 2019. The league is targeting cities with a population of 150,000 to one million, mostly in cities currently without a professional team.[1]

History

The United Soccer League was granted second division sanctioning by the United States Soccer Federation in January 2017, leaving the third tier of American soccer unoccupied. From 1996 to 2009, the United Soccer Leagues operated leagues at the third division under various names, including the USL Second Division, and the second division as USL First Division.[2] On April 2, 2017, the USL announced that it would launch a new third division league in 2019, with a minimum of eight clubs and lower requirements than the second division USL.[3][4] It was also announced that branding and other information about the league would be announced during the summer of 2017.[3]

In the following months, the league began searching for cities to set up a market in. From April 26 to May 3, 2017, Vice President of USL Division III Steven Short toured the southeast region of the United States, stopping in the cities of Lexington, Kentucky, Knoxville, Tennessee, Asheville, North Carolina, Greenville, South Carolina, and Columbia, South Carolina.[5] After the closing of the tour, the league announced a possible plan for Tormenta FC, a Premier Development League team from Georgia, to join the league.[6] A few weeks later, league executives announced they would be visiting the midwest area in the United States between May 22 and 26, stopping in Dayton, Ohio, Toledo, Ohio, Fort Wayne, Indiana, Lansing, Michigan, and Grand Rapids, Michigan.[7] After the original tour concluded, Vice President Short visited Des Moines, Iowa to meet with the Des Moines Menace of the Premier Development League to join the league.[8] Preceding the tour of the midwest, Short visited two more cities in North Carolina: High Point and Fayetteville. Following the tour, Short announced potential plans to build a new multi-purpose stadium in High Point and had positive outlooks on potentially sharing a J. P. Riddle Stadium with the Fayetteville SwampDogs, or the ballpark for the Buies Creek Astros that is expected to be completed by March 2019.[9]

On January 25, 2018, South Georgia Tormenta FC was announced as the first founding member for 2019.[10]

On February 6, 2018, FC Tucson was announced as the second founding member. The club will play in 2019.[11]

On March 13, 2018, Greenville was announced as the third founding member for 2019.[12] On August 9, it was revealed that the team would be known as Greenville Triumph SC.[13]

On May 17, 2018, Madison was announced as the fourth founding member for 2019.[14]

On July 2, 2018, Toronto FC II was announced as the fifth founding member for 2019; stepping down from the United Soccer League.[15]

On August 1, 2018, Chattanooga was announced as the sixth founding member for 2019.[16]

Clubs

USL Division III clubs

See also

References

  1. ^ "About". USL. April 25, 2017. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  2. ^ Kennedy, Paul (March 30, 2017). "USL: A new Division III league in works for 2019". Soccer America. Retrieved December 8, 2017. 
  3. ^ a b "USL to Launch Third-Division League in 2019" (Press release). United Soccer League. April 2, 2017. Retrieved December 8, 2017. 
  4. ^ Straus, Brian (March 30, 2017). "USL will launch second league in 2019 to occupy U.S. Soccer's Division 3". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved December 8, 2017. 
  5. ^ "USL DIII VP Short reflects on southeast expansion tour". USL D3. May 10, 2017. Retrieved July 23, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Tormenta FC to explore USL DIII possibilities". USL D3. May 5, 2017. Retrieved July 23, 2017. 
  7. ^ "USL DIII Expansion Tour Visits Midwest". USL D3. May 22, 2017. Retrieved July 23, 2017. 
  8. ^ "Homonoff: Menace 'Evaluating' USL's DIII". USL D3. June 16, 2017. Retrieved July 23, 2017. 
  9. ^ "Short Shares Thoughts on North Carolina Visits". August 8, 2017. Retrieved August 11, 2017. 
  10. ^ "Tormenta FC joins USL USL Division III for 2019". January 25, 2018. Retrieved January 25, 2018. 
  11. ^ http://www.usld3.com/news_article/show/882387?referrer_id=3067499
  12. ^ http://www.usld3.com/news_article/show/894665?referrer_id=3067499>
  13. ^ https://www.greenvilletriumph.com/news_article/show/940518
  14. ^ http://www.usld3.com/news_article/show/917827?referrer_id=3067499
  15. ^ https://www.usld3.com/news_article/show/928639
  16. ^ https://www.usld3.com/news_article/show/938670

External links

  • Official website
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