- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On June 10, 2014
- 0 Comments
Tuesday was a big day in the Texas capital, as the Austin Aztex announced its entry into USL PRO for the 2015 season, growing the third-tier pro league to 18 members.
The Aztex are the fifth USL PRO expansion team for next year, joining Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC, Louisville City FC, Saint Louis FC and Tulsa Roughnecks FC.
“After two very successful seasons on the field in the PDL – which included a 2013 [PDL] national championship and a steadily growing fan base – we are ready to move to the USL PRO level,” said Rene van de Zande, chairman of Austin’s ownership group. “We have a clear vision for what we want to achieve with our club in Austin and joining USL PRO is part of this. We commend USL PRO for developing a strong and high quality league as well as for the relationship it has established with Major League Soccer. Our ambition is to turn the Austin Aztex into a ‘house of excellence’ geared towards nurturing and developing the best professional players on and off the field.”
For those who do not know, Austin was the original home of Orlando City SC, who are set to move up into Major League Soccer in 2015. The new Aztex owners were still very intentional about their future goals for the franchise on Tuesday.
“This is a proven path to the MLS,” Aztez CEO David Markley told those present at Tuesday’s announcement. Aztex officials also said they plan to craft an affiliate partnership with an MLS club in time for their USL PRO debut campaign.