United Soccer League Is a Great Fit for El Paso and MountainStar Sports Group
Last week, we learned that a professional indoor soccer franchise would be coming to El Paso later this year. The Coyotes have attracted a lot of local interest since their press conference at the Coliseum, and now we are learning that there could be another professional soccer team coming to El Paso. MountainStar Sports Group is interested in bringing a professional soccer franchise to the borderland, and they are talking to the United Soccer League. Like the Chihuahuas, MountainStar Sports Group would use the downtown model featuring a new soccer-only stadium that would seat approximately 7,500 fans as soon as 2018.
KFOX-TV reported earlier this week that MountainStar Sports may choose to work with the county rather than the city in order to build the new stadium. Josh Hunt, Vice Chairman and CEO of MountainStar Sports Group explained to KFOX that part of their decision to work with the county was based on how busy the city has been with the $450 million Quality of Life Bond Issue.
The USL would be a perfect starting place for El Paso's return to professional soccer. The city last fielded a pro soccer team in 2003 when the Patriots were still in the A-League of the USL. The following season, they went down to the player development level and amateur status. As for the new stadium, MountainStar would not want to build a facility that is too big for the USL model. Since we already know that MLS will not consider El Paso as an expansion city, the lower level of professional soccer is an excellent point to gauge the true interest of the sport as it relates to the Sun City. If El Pasoans embrace the new franchise and support it like they have Chihuahuas baseball, the city will be in much better position for a shot at MLS in the future.