USL PRO is welcoming owners and executives from its 14 current and five announced 2015 expansion teams to Portland, Oregon this week for its midseason Board of Governors meetings in conjunction with the 2014 MLS All-Star Game.
USL PRO league executives and clubs will meet Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss long-term strategic planning focused on operations, growth and expansion. In addition to the meetings, attendees will enjoy a tour of USL PRO partner Nike’s World Headquarters, MLS All-Star hospitality events, and the 2014 MLS All-Star Game Wednesday night at Providence Park, as the MLS stars meet FC Bayern Munich.
“The MLS All-Star Game is one of the preeminent soccer events in North America and we are delighted that USL PRO’s owners and executives will take part in the festivities and have the opportunity to network with the North American and global soccer elite,” USL PRO Vice President Jake Edwards said.
Another highlight of the week’s events will be the MLS Homegrown Game on Monday at Providence Park, featuring several players who have played in USL PRO in 2014 thanks to the league’s development partnership with MLS. Among those set to face the PDL’s Portland Timbers U-23s are LA Galaxy II standout Bradford Jamieson, who recorded five goals and an assist for Los Dos before recording an assist in his MLS debut two weeks ago.
Also set to feature in Monday’s contest is OKC Energy FC goalkeeper Jon Kempin, who starred for the expansion side on loan from its MLS partner Sporting Kansas City, and the Sacramento Republic FC duo of Tommy Thompson and Steven Evans, on loan from the San Jose Earthquakes and Portland Timbers, respectively.
The week’s festivities will be capped by the 2014 MLS All-Star Game, which will feature a former USL PRO standout in Sporting Kansas City’s Dom Dwyer. The 2013 All-League selection and Championship Game MVP during his stint on loan with Orlando City SC, Dwyer was named to the All-Star Team on Sunday as his success in USL PRO last season was translated to MLS this year as the young English standout sits tied for second in the league with 14 goals.
USL PRO: USL PRO is the strongest U.S. men’s professional soccer league on and off the field below and in support of Major League Soccer (MLS). Focused on league stability and franchise performance longevity, USL PRO features 14 teams, including 2014 expansion teams in Los Angeles, Oklahoma City and Sacramento. Teams have already been announced for 2015 in Austin, Colorado Springs, Louisville, St. Louis and Tulsa, with more additions expected soon. Through aggressive and deliberate growth in adding teams fully capable of meeting USL and US Soccer standards, USL PRO is building a robust, national professional soccer league in a format that promotes the benefits of regional league play. In 2013 USL PRO began a groundbreaking, multi-year partnership with MLS that features individual team affiliations, inter-league play, and the opportunity for MLS clubs to field a second team in USL PRO. In addition to league play, USL PRO teams compete in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as well as various domestic and international exhibitions. USL PRO is the longest-standing pro league affiliate member of US Soccer.