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Fans Share Interest in USL's DIII

By AARON CRANFORD -, 09/18/17, 2:02PM EDT


Supporters across the U.S. tell league why their cities are ready for pro soccer

As the United Soccer League’s Division III expansion team prepares for more site visits, soccer supporters desiring professional soccer across the United States are letting the league know why it should visit their cities.

Fans have been able to request for the USL’s DIII to visit their cities, and the feedback has been significant. The expansion team, which has been in discussions with more than 50 markets across the nation and visited 13 different cities, will travel to Statesboro and Macon, Georgia, on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively.

Nearly 100 cities have been requested, as the USL’s DIII continues to deliver a professional soccer experience to new, thriving soccer communities across the nation.

Fan Responses:

Mobile, Alabama

“Mobile's a vibrant city with an economy growing faster than any on the Gulf Coast, with a proud sporting tradition and a diverse community. With a massive youth soccer structure and operational bases for multiple international companies, the potential audience for pro soccer in Mobile is massive.”

Tucson, Arizona

“Tucson is one of the 35 largest cities in the United States, yet is frequently overlooked by sports leagues. The AHL just came to town and has been met with excitement. With Phoenix pushing for an MLS team, continuing to grow the sport in Arizona will be very important even in other cities. Tucson has FC Tucson, but that is it for teams. Adding another team in the city would enable fans an opportunity to develop a real futbol culture in the Sonoran Desert.”

Lakeland, Florida

“Lakeland has a centralized market placement – can draw from larger cities while maintaining access for those unwilling to travel to those same larger markets.”

Tallahassee, Florida

“Florida State University is located here. Huge student population, as well as a general public that enjoys sports.”

Des Moines, Iowa

“Des Moines is a beautiful city and would be a great step up for the Des Moines Menace and the state of Iowa. This would also help solidify the Midwest region for USL DIII.”

Lafayette, Louisiana

“Soccer is exploding in Acadiana! The weather is great! The city has a very European feel, and we have two UEFA Pro licensed coaches from Barcelona, Spain, that live in Lafayette.”

Portland, Maine

“Portland, Maine, is a great coastal New England city and has vibrant and active sports community. Soccer team would be a great addition.”

Duluth, Minnesota

“Duluth has finally opened its eyes to soccer, and a DIII team would generate loads of hype in our city.”

Billings, Montana

“Soccer is a hugely untapped market in Montana, the nearest pro team to anywhere in Montana is a minimum of six hours away, making soccer fans have to only be able to watch on TV instead of attending live matches. Billings is the largest city in Montana and already has some semblance of facilities thanks to the MSU Billings soccer team.”

Manchester, New Hampshire

“New Hampshire is a huge untapped market for soccer, as there are no professional sports teams in the state. Plus with Manchester, you would capture the largest city within the upper three New England states while also encompassing Nashua and Concord and your reach. I am personally in Nashua, but I think Manchester is a better site, as its more urban while still having more than enough room to build, more populous, and in the middle between the other two cities mentioned. New Hampshire has been criminally underutilized in the soccer landscape, and I think it has the potential for big things if it has an actual team in-state to support.”

Toledo, Ohio

“Toledo has a great sports market for its size, look at the Walleyes and Mud Hens. Just need the right ownership group to market accordingly and sets up for a lot of nice, local rivalries.”

Eugene, Oregon

“Eugene, OR, has some of the best fans in the country and soccer is a growing sport in the city.”

Fort Worth, Texas

“Here in Fort Worth, there are tons of fans who want to see this sport make it to the forefront! A beautiful city for the most beautiful game.”

Provo, Utah

“Strong millennial population in Provo and the surrounding cities. Two college campuses within five miles. Lots of soccer culture and youth soccer teams and tournaments.”

Spokane, Washington

“Spokane is a great midsized city with several cities a short driving distance away. There is a dearth of teams to support currently and I think that a soccer team would be heartily welcomed in Spokane.”

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

“Milwaukee has a thriving soccer culture with several popular soccer bars, strong youth programs and several amateur teams. There is always strong support for the national team. We also have a couple venues that are ready to go and a team eager to move up to DIII!”

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