The MLS expansion landscape has seen several new wrinkles in the last few weeks, so we wanted to update you on all the latest happenings. The biggest news...
The MLS expansion landscape has seen several new wrinkles in the last few weeks, so we wanted to update you on all the latest happenings. The biggest news...
In Brian Straus’ exhaustive treatment of all 12 MLS hopefuls for Sports Illustrated, he describes San Antonio as “on the fringe” when it comes to its place as...
It has been over two months since 12 hopeful expansion groups submitted their formal bids to MLS for consideration as one of the next (and final?) four expansion...
Nearly 2 months ago, San Antonio FC submitted their expansion bid (no..actually, it is San Antonio’s expansion bid) to the fine folks at Major League Soccer headquarters in...
On January 31st of 2017, Spurs Sports & Entertainment formally submitted their bid for a Major League Soccer expansion franchise.
MLSinSA’s mission with this site and specifically with ‘The Bid’ section is to accentuate the San Antonio bid.
Currently, we highlight four distinct areas that comprise San Antonio’s bid for a Major League Soccer expansion franchise:
We invite you to scroll through and take in the information within these 4 pillars of ‘The Bid’.
For your convenience, you may jump to the various pillars using the navigation which is always available at the top of the web page. You can use the up arrow button on the bottom right to return to the top of the page.
Our ultimate goal is to bring to the forefront how much San Antonio’s bid for MLS is a turnkey solution in a thriving sports market in the nation’s 7th largest city.
San Antonio FC and it’s parent organization are not hiding the fact that their region encapsulates a huge chunk of the Great State of Texas. They without a doubt have reason to believe their impact on this state will continue with their splash into the beautiful game. With that said, MLS puts an emphasis on regional rivalries and with two successful MLS clubs in FC Dallas and Houston Dynamo within a few hours driving distance, we see more areas than what we are currently featuring that strengthen the San Antonio Bid.
We welcome any and all feedback and will continue to strive to keep this section up to date while considering adding more features.
Spurs Sports & Entertainment has submitted its application for Major League Soccer’s expansion process.
We want to thank Bexar County, the City of San Antonio, our corporate partners and all of our supporters for their collaboration.
We are a unified community and remain convinced an MLS franchise would be a huge asset to San Antonio and great addition to the league.
Spurs Sports & Entertainment (January 31, 2017)
Spurs Sports & Entertainment is an excellent partner for Major League Soccer in San Antonio.San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor
I’ve had the opportunity to work with the Spurs Sports & Entertainment organization. Best ownership group in the country across all sports.Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff
I’m San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor and we fully support the efforts to bring MLS to San Antonio.San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor
We’ve got a good market for soccer and we have city and county support for MLS.Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff
Spurs Sports & Entertainment (SS&E) is the premier provider of sports and entertainment in South Texas. SS&E owns and operates the San Antonio Spurs (NBA), San Antonio Rampage (AHL), San Antonio Stars (WNBA), Austin Spurs (NBA Development League), San Antonio FC (USL), and also manages the day-to-day operations of the AT&T Center and Silver & Black Give Back, a 501c3 public charity.
With a staff of more than 250 employees, Spurs Sports & Entertainment exists to provide the highest quality sports and entertainment experience to its guests and to have a positive impact within the community.
The Spurs Sports & Entertainment ownership group is led by chairman and CEO Julianna Hawn Holt.
San Antonio FC is SS&E’s newest sporting franchise. They play in the 2nd division of the US Soccer Pyramid in the United Soccer League (USL). They are currently competing in their second season. San Antonio FC’s home stadium is Toyota Field, which is widely considered the top soccer-specific stadium in lower level American soccer.
San Antonio FC is led by Managing Director Tim Holt. Holt joined SS&E from Orlando City SC where he served as vice president of development, contributing to the team’s successful inaugural campaign in Major League Soccer last year. Holt also led the launch of the Orlando Pride (NWSL) and Orlando City B (USL) franchises. Before joining Orlando City, Holt served as President of the USL from 2009-2015, developing the USL into one of the top soccer leagues in North America. Holt was also a key figure in establishing the affiliation partnership between the USL and MLS that has become the platform for professional player development in the United States and Canada.
SS&E on January 31st of 2017 formally submitted their bid to Major League Soccer for consideration as an expansion club during MLS’s next round of expansion which is expected to get the first division league to 28 clubs.
On March 26, 1993, a group of 22 investors purchased the San Antonio Spurs.
The group currently numbers 20 investors who are members of a limited liability company known as San Antonio Spurs, L.L.C. The ownership group has a seven-person governing and decision-making body and Julianna Hawn Holt serves as the Chairman of the group.
Listed below are the current members of San Antonio Spurs, L.L.C.:
Toyota Field is the beautiful home of San Antonio FC. It’s the true definition of a soccer-specific stadium because its intimate design allows fans to be close to the field and the acoustical structure amplifies the crowd’s roaring support for SAFC. Plus, spacious traffic flow areas enable fans to get from one area to another during the match, which is always important for that next beer and hot dog run.
The stadium’s current seating capacity is about 8,500 and was originally designed for expansion to more than 18,500 with MLS in mind.
Another key benefit of Toyota Field is its location in San Antonio along Wurzbach Parkway (5106 David Edwards Dr.) in the northeast section of the city. The stadium is a short drive from San Antonio International Airport and only a couple minutes away from I-35 that connects Austin roughly an hour away to the North and closer thriving communities along the way – San Marcos, New Braunfels, Cibolo and Schertz.
Toyota Field opened in April 2013. In November 2015, the city of San Antonio and Bexar County jointly acquired the stadium and SS&E received a 20-year lease to operate the facility.
OHHHHHHHHH SAN ANTONIOOOOOOOOOO! OHHHHHHH SAN ANTONIOOOOOOOO!
San Antonio is a soccer city with a rich supporters culture and the fans prove it. Going all the way back to the March 2004 MLS exhibition at a packed Blossom Athletic Center, San Antonio has proven over and over again that it loves its soccer.
Following in the footsteps of the Sons of Ben, the Crocketteers established themselves in 2009 as a San Antonio-based supporters group without a team to call their own. Organizing massive watch parties for events like the 2010 World Cup and other major international and MLS soccer matches and events, the Crocketteers proved that there was a rabid soccer audience in the Alamo City just waiting for a team to call their own.
In 2012, with the creation of the San Antonio Scorpions, that dream finally became reality. That season also saw the emergence of the Bexar County Casuals as a new face on the supporters landscape. True to their motto “Loyalty Above All,” they followed the Scorpions into the sunset when the franchise was dissolved.
With the creation of San Antonio FC in 2016, San Antonio saw the rise of Mission City Firm, pledging to “Stand for 90+” and bringing a “Puro Pinché Party” atmosphere to all home games.
Also new to the fold were the SAFC Gardeners – known for their bright shirts and humor centered chants – you can find them terrorizing opposing goalkeepers from the Beer Garden area of Toyota Field.
In 2017 another new group has emerged – 210 Alliance – with their rally cry of “Forever True.” Like the Gardeners, you will find 210 Alliance at the Bud Light Bunker.
Whether you’re a member of one of the organized groups or just in the stands with your friends and family, you can count on vocal and passionate support for San Antonio FC at every match.
Beyond SAFC game days, you can find fan clubs of numerous international teams at local bars and pubs all over the city. On any given Saturday morning you’ll find rowdy soccer fans leaving sleep behind to gather and loudly cheer on their favorite teams en masse. Similarly, the American Outlaws San Antonio chapter can always be found congregating together any time the red, white and blue plays a match.
It’s easy to see the passion of soccer fans in San Antonio on an even bigger stage any time an international match comes to town. Consider a couple of quick facts: the USA vs. Mexico match sold out two months before kickoff in 2015 (64,369-Alamodome); Mexico friendlies have generated crowds of more than 50,000 and the U.S. Women’s National team played in front of one of the largest home crowds in 2013 in San Antonio (19,109-Alamodome). So whether it’s a MLS exhibition, Liga MX at Toyota Field or the Gold Cup in San Antonio in July 2017, it’s apparent that soccer thrives in our city and is here for the long haul.
FOREVER TRUE, WE WILL… ALWAYS LOVE OUR CITY!
LOYAL TO OUR HOME… SAN ANTONIOOOOO!
Established in 2009 (3 years prior to any pro team), the Crocketteers made a name for themselves as San Antonio’s first ever supporters group. They call themselves “San Antonio’s Premier Supporters” but they began as an impressive grassroots movement generating a buzz for San Antonio as a potential pro soccer market.
They support San Antonio FC as well as supporting all soccer in #OurCity. The Crocketteers sponsor and coach several youth teams in our community as well. When you visit Toyota Field for an SAFC match, look around and you will find Crocketteers all over the stadium.
They are known for throwing one of the largest tailgate parties before San Antonio FC home matches. The tailgates are free and open to all fans of the sport. Crocketteers also host watch parties for all SAFC away matches as well as watch parties for the USMNT/ USWNT matches and World Cup events.
Misson City Firm is an independent football organization whose mission is to give 100% of their support to San Antonio FC. Mission City Firm prides themselves in being a bilingual group with chants in Spanish and English. Mission City Firm is the Official Supporters Group for San Antonio FC.
Mission City Firm reside in Section 118 of Toyota Field. One of their mottos is “Orgullo, Pasion, Corazon”, which translates to “Pride, Passion, Heart”.
They strongly believe in professional football here in San Antonio. The founders began with their organization the day pro soccer came to San Antonio.
Misson City Firm are a very diverse group of individuals and welcome any and all persons who share the same passion for the game and for what professional football here in San Antonio will do for our community.
Gardeners are the SAFC supporters in the beer garden behind the south goal known as the Bud Light Beer Bunker. That’s pretty much the only “definition” available for this group. This is because everybody involved with the group gets to define what it means.
Gardeners love to tailgate and love to share that experience with others. They have an open door policy to their party. Lots of Gardeners watch the match in the beer garden while heckling the keeper (and the refs, and the opposing players and each other).
Of course, EVERYBODY is welcome to join in on the fun. Plenty of Gardeners can be seen standing out from the masses as they wear “bright and obnoxious” colors (their words, not ours). It’s not just the fans that take notice but the players as well. And did we forget to mention, EVERYBODY is welcome to join in. The Gardeners believe that this is #MyClub. Its #YourClub. Its #OurClub. And its what we all do that defines it.
210 Alliance is the newest supporters group for SAFC. The name was born out of the fact that a couple of different groups of people came together, all of whom have passion & love for San Antonio and its teams. They understand that passion can come from many different places. So as long as you are passionate for SAFC, 210 Alliance wants you there.
You can find 210 Alliance tailgating in the tailgate lot underneath the Thousand Oaks Bridge. They are easy to find. They are the ones playing beer pong, flip cup, or FIFA. They sing and cheer on #OurClub in the Beer Garden at the corner flag. They encourage any and all who want to join and support SAFC to please stand, drink, and sing with the Alliance! Soccer is about having fun and loving your city and that’s what they are all about.
“No matter how big or small, we are with Silver & Black on our backs and Passion in our hearts. We are unstoppable. Forever True.”
In April of 2016, San Antonio FC launched the SAFC Pro Academy – a youth development program for the area’s elite boys’ players which started with a 2004 birth-year team this season. In June of last year, the club named Nick Evans as the first SAFC Pro Academy Director in team history. The academy is expanding to three teams at the 2006 (U-12), 2005 (U-13) and 2004 (U-14) birth years for the upcoming season in the fall.
The objective of the SAFC Pro Academy program is to identify and train the best players in the San Antonio market on a pathway to become a homegrown player for the San Antonio FC professional team or opportunities in college soccer.
In addition to developing skilled and dynamic soccer players, key components of the program will be that each player display excellent personal character, become actively involved in community activities and focus on academic performance.
The SAFC Pro Academy is structured to be a collaborative initiative between all local youth clubs and organizations in the San Antonio community by offering these clubs the opportunity to be an active part of the player identification process and other benefits.
San Antonio FC and its academy teams have also been selected for admission to the U.S Soccer Federation’s Development Academy starting this fall. The SAFC Pro Academy will have three boys’ teams at the U-12, U-13 and U-14 levels that will participate in the 2017-18 Development Academy season.
The leadership team we have at San Antonio FC have again demonstrated their commitment to ensuring we are providing our San Antonio and greater area youth players the programming needed in order to provide a path-to-pro experience, and to push towards having local players represent our club at the professional level.
The USSF Development Academy will provide our players with consistent elite level competition every week, which we all look forward to. We would like to extend our sincere thanks and gratitude to U.S. Soccer for recognizing our club’s commitment to player development.
SAFC Pro Academy Director Nick Evans
We challenge Major League Soccer, MLS Commissioner Don Garber and all San Antonio elected officials to bring a Major League Soccer franchise to San Antonio, Texas. With San Antonio FC – powered by Spurs Sports & Entertainment – and with the city’s rich history of international and MLS exhibition friendlies, there is no question the market is MLS ready.
The city’s dynamic soccer fan base is proven and growing every day. We’re stating for the record San Antonio is primed to support the highest level of professional soccer America has to offer — Major League Soccer.
We strongly believe San Antonio is one of the top candidates for MLS expansion. Commissioner Garber has stated the criteria for a new franchise and San Antonio has already met it:
With a tremendous soccer-specific stadium in place and a viable expansion plan, one of the best ownership groups in the U.S. at the helm and a vibrant fan base, there is no question San Antonio is ready for MLS.