Tuesday May 10, 2011
TAMPA, Fla. – USL announced today that it has formally removed the three Puerto Rico Soccer League (PRSL) teams from the 2011 USL PRO schedule.
PRSL teams Puerto Rico United, River Plate Puerto Rico, and Sevilla FC Puerto Rico were participating in USL PRO as part of an agreement between the two leagues to grow professional soccer in Puerto Rico. Due to severe economic difficulties and serious unforeseen medical situations involving owners from two of the three PRSL teams, the teams are unable to continue to meet league standards and obligations.
“In the best interests of USL PRO and its teams, it was necessary to remove the three PRSL teams,” USL CEO Alec Papadakis said. “USL PRO has established high standards which are an integral component of the league model, and we are determined to preserve the integrity of these standards on and off the field. Dealing proactively with this situation allows us to reset our daily focus on supporting the efforts of our USL PRO teams in maintaining the league’s position as the strongest, best operated domestic league below MLS.”
Each USL PRO team will continue to play 24 regular season games. All USL PRO games involving PRSL teams will continue to count towards the league standings with future games to be rescheduled amongst the 12 teams. Specific reschedule and realignment details will be publicly released later this week.
“Although disappointed we are unable to move forward as originally planned with the PRSL teams, we will continue to explore future initiatives that can benefit both the PRSL and USL,” USL President Tim Holt said. “In the immediate term, the priority is ensuring that the early-season success experienced by the majority of our USL PRO teams in terms of fan support, corporate sponsorship, and the emergence of a new class of exciting young players is sustained through the rest of the 2011 season.”