By NICHOLAS MURRAY – firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, January 7, 2016
SAN ANTONIO, Texas – The USL welcomed Spurs Sports & Entertainment as the owners of the league’s 31st franchise on Thursday afternoon, San Antonio, which will begin play in the 2016 season.
The club’s first head coach was also announced, as Darren Powell was introduced to lead the team in its inaugural season after successful stints with Orlando City SC and Elon University.
“We’re thrilled to be here in San Antonio,” said USL President Jake Edwards at Thursday’s press conference. “We see the Spurs organization as a perfect fit for our ownership group. Like our league, they’re ambitious, they’re forward thinkers, and under the leadership of Peter Holt this has become one of the most dynamic and respected and admired sports organizations in North America.”
- RELATED: 31st USL Franchise Awarded to San Antonio
The new club will play at Toyota Field, and is the USL’s second expansion club in Texas for the 2016 season following Rio Grande Valley FC. Other regional rivalries will include Tulsa Roughnecks FC and OKC Energy FC, with Energy FC’s Tim McLaughlin and Jeff Ewing in attendance at Thursday’s press conference.
“It has been seven years that we’ve been talking to the USL,” said SS&E President of Business Operations Rick Pych. “Over those seven years, we grew more and more to admire and respect the people that run that league. It’s not by chance that the league continues to expand and grow, and it’s due to their professionalism, it’s due to their hard work, it’s due to their ethical approach to soccer, and the more we worked with them, the more we were convinced the USL was the league we wanted to be in.”
- WATCH: San Antonio Press Conference from Toyota Field
After his introduction as Head Coach, Powell said he was excited by the reception he had received in the city since his arrival, and looked forward to playing in front of the passionate support that was present through the Crocketteers and others at the press conference.“I was told how passionate and enthusiastic the fans and supporters of San Antonio are,” Powell said. “If the last 24 hours is anything to judge by, you’re far more passionate, far more enthusiastic than I could have ever imagined. I can’t wait for opening night when we get started in the USL at the end of March. I’m really looking forward to that opportunity, and I hope to see many of you there that evening so we can pack this house.”