The North American Soccer League was the U.S. home of Pele, New York Cosmos, Johan Cruyff, the Dips. And now it may be coming to Loudoun County.
The NASL that flourished in the ‘70s folded in 1984. But a new second division minor league, at the level just below Major League Soccer, played its first season in 2011 as the NASL, and it has teams in Atlanta, Tampa Bay, San Antonio, but also in similar suburbs such as Cary, N.C., and Blaine, Minn. Loudoun has been working for a team for some time.
The Post’s Soccer Insider, Steve Goff, has been tantalizing us with reports in recent weeks that the new NASL is close to awarding a franchise to Loudoun for the 2014 season. On Tuesday, the NASL commissioner reportedly met with representatives for Virginia Investment Partnership, Goff wrote. VIP is also the owner of the long-rumored, little-seen Loudoun Hounds minor league baseball team, which is supposed to be located in the large proposed Kincora development in Sterling. The new NASL team would share their stadium with the Hounds, Goff reported.
However, that new stadium and surrounding development just broke ground in October
haven’t broken ground yet. Can they be ready in two years?
Kincora Village Center is a planned mixed-use (there’s that word again) development at the intersections of Routes 7 and 28, across from Dulles Town Center. The plan calls for 1,400 residential units, 4 million feet of office space, retail and an arts center arranged around a retro-style urban ballpark. That hasn’t exactly sprung up, though, and the Loudoun Hounds’ opening day, once slated for spring 2012, is now back to spring 2014 at the earliest.
Goff reports that the VIP investors “hope to have a stadium plan in place within 30 days.” Does this signal movement on Kincora? Signs of life for the Hounds, an independent A-ball team which has a great logo and colors but no stadium or players? If the NASL can make it happen, they may have to call it Pele Park.
And the team name? FC Dulles? Chivas Loudoun?
Your suggestions welcome in the comments.
This post updated to reflect that Kincora has broken ground in Sterling. Awaiting further updates from the developer.