March 5, 2021 4:59 pm | by Eugene Molefe
ON EMBARGO UNTIL 3 P.M. ET ON THURSDAY, MARCH 4
Contact: MLS NEXT Communications
MLS NEXT Expands; Announces Early Admissions Ahead of 2021-2022 Season
Regular Admissions to be Announced in May
NEW YORK (Thursday, March 4, 2021) – MLS NEXT announced on Thursday the addition of five youth soccer clubs ahead of its 2021-2022 season. The five clubs, Hoover-Vestavia Soccer (HVS), Lou Fusz, Texas United, Tormenta FC and Wake Futbol Club, join MLS NEXT through the Early Admissions phase of the application process.
These five clubs join an impressive roster of expansion clubs including St. Louis City Academy, Albion SC Las Vegas and Las Vegas Sports Academy, who were announced in August of 2020, but will first take the pitch during the 2021-2022 season. MLS NEXT is now home to 118 clubs, 521 teams and over 11,000 players.
Clubs interested in applying for Regular Admission may still apply here. Regular Admission will be revealed in May and Waitlist Admission in July. MLS NEXT staff will continue to review applications in advance of the upcoming fall season while adhering to a strict set of prerequisites. Clubs will be evaluated based on the implementation of a defined soccer philosophy, quality of coaching staff, record of top player production, and professionalism of daily environment. Also of vital importance is the club’s ability to provide low or no-cost options for players to participate on MLS NEXT teams, creating opportunities for a more inclusive player pool.
The industry leading partnership between adidas and Major League Soccer continues to drive the evolution of player development. Adidas will not only provide the official match ball for all MLS NEXT matches but will also partner with MLS in advancing the game in North America and creating an atmosphere that supports these young players on the professional pathway.
The platform features competition across six age groups: U-13, U-14, U-15, U-16, U-17 and U-19. The full list of member clubs can be found HERE. More information about MLS NEXT can be found HERE. Further updates about the 2021-22 MLS NEXT Season will be available in the coming weeks.
What They Are Saying – Expansion Clubs
Hoover-Vestavia Soccer (HVS) – Birmingham, AL
“Everyone at HVS has been working hard to provide the best environment for the growth of our players and our sport. Quality coaches, players, and facilities have been in place from the start. Now we have the very best playing platform available. We are all very excited to start this new chapter in Alabama soccer.” – Mike Getman, Director of Coaching
Lou Fusz – St. Louis, MO
“Our club has been building for the moment this opportunity presented itself. Our players, teams and coaches cannot wait to test themselves against other great clubs and leave it all out on the field. Meaningful competition for the next generation of players is paramount to American soccer continuing to raise its level.” – Dan Gargan, EVP & Managing Director
Texas United – Dallas, TX
“Texas United is proud to present The Texas United Youth Soccer Academy which will join the MLS NEXT league for the 2021-2022 season. MLS NEXT has created a high-level playing platform for elite players to reach their full potential on and off the field”. – Christie Nelson, President
Tormenta FC – Statesboro, GA
“MLS NEXT is our vehicle in South Georgia and the Lowcountry of South Carolina to take youth soccer to the next level. MLS NEXT enhances our overall player development pathway by providing our elite boys teams an opportunity to compete against the best youth players from around the country, as well as all of the MLS Academies. These teams will then feed into our USL pro pathway through USL Academy, USL League Two, and eventually the pro ranks with League One. Our players will be challenged and expected to grow in ways that will allow them to develop in a system that has produced top professional and collegiate players.” – Brad Nein, Academy Vice President
Wake FC – Wake County, NC
“Wake FC is excited to join MLS NEXT. The resources, leadership, and pathway of the platform will allow our club to not only compete against the best players and clubs in the country, but to also provide a tremendous opportunity for development and exposure to our players who want to compete on the highest levels.” – David Allred, Executive Director
ABOUT MLS NEXT
MLS NEXT is an elite youth soccer development platform, launched in 2020 to provide the best player development experience in North America. Founded on a collaborative approach to governance and a commitment to innovation, MLS NEXT players have access to the highest level of competition, training and personal development opportunities that will prepare them for their futures, both in soccer and in life. Current membership includes 118 clubs, 521 teams and over 11,000 players across the U.S. and Canada. For more information about MLS NEXT, visit www.mlssoccer.com/mlsnext.