Venue Problems Cause Austin Aztex to Not Participate in 2016 Season
7 Oct, 2015
Club to Focus on Stadium Development, Will Return with New Facility in 2017
The United Soccer League has granted permission for the Austin Aztex to not participate in the 2016 season due to the unavailability of a stadium that meets league standards and the unforeseen delays in the development of a soccer-specific stadium in Austin. The Aztex will resume play in the 2017 season.
Austin was initially granted a one-year waiver by the USL to allow the club to secure a soccer-specific stadium by the end of its first season. The club suffered a setback in that process this season when its home stadium – House Park – was damaged in flooding on Memorial Day weekend, forcing the club to focus its energies on finding a replacement venue for the remainder of the 2015 season.
“The USL is committed to having its clubs play in quality facilities that meet or exceed U.S. Soccer Federation standards and understands the challenges the Austin Aztex have faced this year,” USL President Jake Edwards said. “We are honoring Austin’s request for the necessary time to construct a soccer-specific stadium of its own for the 2017 season that the club, its fans and the entire Austin community will be proud of. While we realize this isn’t the desired short-term outcome for the club and its fans, it is necessary to ensure the club’s success for years to come.”
The USL features 24 clubs in 2015 and recently announced the additions of Lehigh Valley, FC Cincinnati and Rio Grande Valley FC for the 2016 season and Reno, Nevada for 2017.
USL: The USL is the strongest U.S. men’s professional soccer league below Major League Soccer (MLS). The USL features 24 teams in 2015 across the United States and Canada. Through aggressive and strategic growth, the USL has built a stable, national professional soccer league. In addition to league play, USL teams compete in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as well as various domestic and international exhibitions. The USL is the longest-standing professional affiliate.