The past decade has witnessed the shocking disintegration of US Soccer’s professional landscape, with a staggering 28 teams vanishing from the scene. From San Diego Loyal’s recent demise in 2023 to the earlier losses stretching back to 2014, the list of the fallen is damning:
San Diego Loyal (2023)
Bay Cities FC, California United Strikers, Rochester Rhinos/Rochester NY FC, Valley United FC (2022)
Austin Bold FC, Stumptown AC (2021)
NY Cosmos, Reno 1868 FC, St. Louis FC (2020)
… and the list goes depressingly on.
This doesn’t even account for teams like New Amsterdam FC, Chicago House AC, and Charlotte Eagles, which have been relegated to the amateur status, a barely-there existence compared to their former glory.
One can’t help but point a critical finger at US Soccer. Their oversight, or perhaps the sheer lack of it, raises pressing questions about the organization’s competence, vision, and commitment to the sport’s professional tier. The rapid decay of teams affects more than just numbers; it shakes the foundations of communities, shatters dreams of players, and betrays the trust of countless fans.
What’s truly astounding is the seeming complacency of US Soccer amidst this crisis. The question on everyone’s mind is: What, if anything, is US Soccer doing to curb this spiral of doom? Their silence, or inadequate response, will define the legacy of soccer in the US