USL Pro adds St. Louis franchise as part of 2015 expansion class

USLPRo

 

By FRANCO PANIZO

Make room for one more team in next season’s USL Pro expansion class.

Professional soccer will be back in St. Louis, Missouri, in 2015 after USL Pro announced Thursday that it has awarded an expansion franchise to SLSG Pro LLC. St. Louis becomes the third expansion team announced for next season, joining Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC and Tulsa Roughnecks FC.

Additional announcements are expected in the near future.

“We are thrilled to welcome St. Louis into USL Pro starting with the 2015 season,” USL CEO Alec Papadakis said in a statement. “St. Louis, more than any other U.S. city, has significantly contributed to the development and growth of American soccer on all levels – youth, collegiate and professional. Through the years, St. Louis players, coaches and soccer executives have greatly impacted not only the game of soccer, but the history of American soccer itself.

“The individuals involved with the St. Louis USL Pro franchise have unquestionable integrity and credibility with both the soccer and business communities. Undoubtedly, St. Louis’ USL Pro team, coupled with the storied Scott Gallagher organization, has the formula for making St. Louis one of the most successful clubs in the league.”

The St. Louis franchise has begun working on a club name, logo, colors and uniforms. Announcements for those are expected in the coming months.

The team will play its home games at 5,000-seat Soccer Park in Fenton, Missouri, and will be led by head coach Dale Schilly.

Jim Kavanaugh, who co-founded World Wide Technology back in 1990, will serve as CEO of SLSG Pro and oversee the operations of the club.

—–

What do you think of USL Pro announcing St. Louis as a 2015 expansion team? What would you like the team name and colors to be? See the St. Louis club getting good turnouts at Soccer Park?

Share your thoughts below.

 

This entry was posted in Featured, USL Pro. Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to USL Pro adds St. Louis franchise as part of 2015 expansion class

  1. MLSsnob says:

    This just in, the 2015 expansion team St. Louis set to to cease operations by 2016.

  2. Matt says:

    They will be associated with the Fire.

  3. confused says:

    Who is Scott Gallagher? I’m out of the loop on this.

    • Tyler says:

      Black Gallagher?

      link to m.youtube.com

    • Sharkbait says:

      It’s actually what is Scott Gallagher as opposed to who. SLSG stands for St. Louis Scott Gallagher and it’s one of the best if not the best youth clubs here in Missouri to the best of my knowledge. I live in Springfield and my nephew plays for one of the Springfield Soccer Club teams and I think the Scott Gallagher teams tend to be among the toughest games at every tournament they go to.

    • Andy McClatchey says:

      as others have said Scott Gallagher is an elite youth club. Not just the best in Missouri but one of the top 10 in the country for producing talent.

  4. AdamU says:

    Scott Gallagher was the art director of the texas chainsaw massacre movie remake
    in 2003

    • Gerald says:

      Well played, seriously though Scott Gallagher is one of the better known youth soccer clubs and they are based in the St Louis area

      • AdamU says:

        Yes I know I was joking. The story I have heard is that Scott and Gallagher were the last names of people associated with the club when it was founded in the 70′s. I haven’t been able to get an answer as to what their involvement was but I’m sure tommy howe and others would know.

  5. Always liked the name ‘St. Louis Athletica’ despite the fact that they were the former WPS team.

    Also could do with:
    St. Louis Sparrows FC
    St. Louis Legions FC
    St. Louis Garrisons FC

    • Bobb says:

      AC St Louis, same awesome crest as before, but now with serious financial backing.

      • Lemmmmmmmmmy!!! says:

        Word. How bout some continuity for a change.

        • STT says:

          I doubt a USL Pro will touch anything Cooper ever had his hands on. Then again, SLSG was part of the ACSTL/Athletica umbrella, so maybe it’s possible.

      • solles says:

        the gold-black-white strip was cool too

  6. MMV says:

    Love, love, love that St. Louis is back. This time, I hope, it’s with the right ownership group and the right vision. STL has such a rich, rich history of soccer and city deserves to have a successful and well followed professional club. I tell you what — if I were the powers to be — I would hit a homerun right off the bat by sticking true to the club’s STL roots. My first order of business would be to hire Taylor Twellman as an executive of some sort. Then I’d hire coaching staff of Mike Sorber, Pat Noonan, and Steve Ralston all of who have cut their coaching teeth in MLS. Sorber would be my manager flanked by Noonan and Ralston. STL could seriously have quite the franchise if many of the STL connected players, coaches, and personnel flocked back to their hometown.

  7. Oshi says:

    “Additional announcements are expected in the near future.”

    AKA Orlando’s franchise moving to Louisville. Hmm. St. Louis and Louisville. Louis Derby, anyone?

  8. b says:

    Lets hope it lasts longer than A.C. St. Louis. I also hope they find a new home. The Soccer Park is not the best location. Someplace a little more accessible would be nice or they will see attendance wind down after the first few weeks like they did in 2010.

  9. Sharkbait says:

    I live in Missouri and I can flat out never understand the people that seem to be running the St. Louis soccer scene. I would’ve thought by now that everyone understands that the 90s MLS mentality of catering to soccer moms and putting stadiums out in the suburbs is absolutely not the way to go. I think the problem with pro soccer in St. Louis is that things there are completely run by the rich, preppy soccer club people who all have their mansions in the suburbs and live in their own little worlds.

    These are the same type of people who wanted to put an MLS stadium for a St. Louis team in Illinois for crying out loud! As much as I want a STL MLS team that would’ve been a disaster. KC can get away with being spread between two states but the Mississippi River is a very definite boundary in St. Louis that you just don’t cross. If your not familiar with STL just look at a map; pretty much everything stops at the river.

    I’ll be curious to see how this USL Pro team does. I can’t imagine a casual fan ever attending a game in Fenton and these youth club teams keep their kids so busy even they will have a hard time making it to games.

    • Ian says:

      +1. Couldn’t’ve said it better myself. I always thought that at least starting out, a professional club at any level in STL should try and work something out with SLU’s stadium. It’s certainly small, but Soccer Park isn’t much bigger. It’s centrally located, too. I also think something they should try and do is tap into the immigrant populations here, namely Latinos and Bosnians. I reeeaaaalllly really want this to work out, and I will definitely do my part and try and attend as many games as I can, but I’ll remain skeptical until they show us they’re serious about this.

    • Lemmmmmmmmmy!!! says:

      “I would’ve thought by now that everyone understands that the 90s MLS mentality of catering to soccer moms and putting stadiums out in the suburbs is absolutely not the way to go.”

      Perfectly put. Wish Atlanta Silverbacks FC unterstood this.

    • Al says:

      I’m also a Native of St.Louis Missouri and now that has a Pro Soccer team, I’m willing to drive 200 miles up north from Springfield MO. to Fenton to attend a USL Pro rather than an out dated 1980′s indoor soccer. I know it still hurt to this day after what Jeff Cooper did to A.C.St.Louis because it was well attended despite not being heavy advertise. To me it doesn’t matter if it’s MLS, NASL or USL Pro, I rather for the St.Louis to have one of the three soccer league than to have semi-pro soccer.

  10. Landon Donovan says:

    “St. Louis, more than any other U.S. city, has significantly contributed to the development and growth of American soccer on all levels – youth, collegiate and professional.

    Um, hello? Redlands?

  11. AdamU says:

    Hopefully they will go for a cool name like the Dayton Dutch lions have.

    Also for the other St. Louis soccer fans out there Washington University is hosting a panel discussion about the US becoming a soccer country with Taylor Twellmann, Dan Flynn and Grant Wahl on May 5.

  12. matt says:

    Excited to see the explosive growth in USL (and to a lesser extent NASL). Charleston battery was my first pro soccer experience (back when they were 2nd-tier rather than 3rd) and while most USL teams don’t have an SSS like that, it’s exciting to think of all the metro areas that currently draw thousands of fans to lower-division soccer games every weekend. It’d be great to see lower-division soccer approach minor-league baseball in terms of every mid to major US metro area that isn’t quite big enough for a 1st division team (or just didn’t get one for whatever reason) has a 2nd or 3rd division team for fans to enjoy and kids to look up to.

    Also, as an aside, I’m curious to see how USL does against the NASL in the US Open Cup. It seems to me there isn’t much separating the two leagues right now (except for the “super clubs” in each league like Orlando and the Cosmos). I wish nothing but the best for both leagues.

  13. McCallumKnights says:

    St. Louis Lions?

  14. NASL to El Paso tx says:

    I know people will go crazy after they read this comment but El Paso tx needs NASL or Uslpro. El Paso is soccer city of texas and El Paso loves soccer.
    As a matter of fact El Paso tx is going through some awesome transformation from left to right and we just got a downtown triple A baseball stadium and the old baseball stadium might become a soccer stadium and some local rich people said, we want professional soccer in the future. Can someone from uslpro or NASL call our city council please :)
    El Paso can easily fill a 20,000 stadium.
    Another thing, will MLS ever start MLS2. They have to make an MLS2 no matter what and uslpro can be division 3 or can MLS buy uslpro. Something has to happen and MLS2 is a no brainier

    • FRANK says:

      STOP TROLLING THIS WEBSITE I LIKE TO READ IT FOR SOCCER NEWS

    • solles says:

      what happened to the Patriots?

      and, please please please please never post about MLS2 again. ever. PLEASE.

    • Falls City Outlaw says:

      After I read this article at Grantland, I understand NASL to El Paso tx’s fervor. That said, it’s annoying to have to listen to the same speil all the time. Trust me friend, posting on SBI will not get you a franchise. The SG I’m a part of, the Louisville Coopers, worked with local business men to make USL happen. If you want to seriously try to organize someone, I would tweet @LouCoopers for some advice. But you need to get the deep pockets in your town get together and splash the cash.

      link to grantland.com