NATIONAL INDEPENDENT SOCCER ASSOCIATION KICKS OFF ANNOUNCEMENTS OF MARKETS THAT WILL HOST PROFESSIONAL SOCCER IN 2019
A Connecticut-Based Club Will Represent New England When Play Begins
CHICAGO, IL – The National Independent Soccer Association (NISA) has announced its first market ahead of the league’s inaugural season.
NISA’s unique brand of professional soccer is heading to Connecticut. The club’s specific location, ownership and team name will be revealed in the coming weeks.
Chicago-based NISA is poised to confirm several additional markets through a series of staggered announcements that will run through mid-December, having formally applied to the sport’s governing body, the United States Soccer Federation, for sanctioning as a professional league. NISA expects to begin play in August of 2019.
“Next year, our clubs will excite fans across the nation,” said NISA President Bob Watkins. “We have been eager to start rolling out our clubs for some time. Connecticut is one of the best soccer markets in America and we are excited to bring our community-based approach to the game to the Constitution State.”
Connecticut has long been a regional hotbed for soccer supporters. Connecticut was the eighth-best TV viewing market for the English Premier League in 2017-2018, despite only being a top 30 media market nationwide. It is also home of one of the largest American Outlaw chapters in the nation.
“Connecticut’s soccer community has a long history of supporting the game, particularly our U.S. national teams,” added Watkins. “The supporter culture in Connecticut is outstanding so we are looking forward to contributing to that.”
Unlike other American soccer leagues, NISA will play a fall-to-spring season. Playing August through May, with a winter break, is standard throughout international soccer but unusual in America. It is hoped that NISA’s adoption will be a first step towards bringing American soccer in-line with the standard business practices of the worldwide game, such as the international transfer window.
In a move away from the closed franchise model that is prevalent in American soccer, NISA operates an open system with no entry fees. This allows its member clubs to run comparatively higher payrolls rather than paying entry fees that frequently run in the millions. More importantly, it allows clubs to invest in the long-term assets such as stadiums, infrastructure, and youth academies that will make NISA clubs a stable part of their communities.
NISA is an American professional soccer league. Owned by its member clubs, NISA seeks to establish an affordable and sustainable lower division league.
Unlike other domestic soccer leagues, NISA has no entry fees. This allows NISA clubs to invest more heavily in players, youth development academies and infrastructure while remaining fiscally sound.
NISA will play on the international fall-to-spring calendar. This integrates NISA clubs into the worldwide game by facilitating seamless scheduling with clubs throughout the world and allowing full participation in the international transfer market.
NISA is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois.