Albuquerque is getting a professional soccer team. It’s the USL, which is below Major League Soccer, like the minor leagues.
They’ll play at Isotopes Park, but there could be a soccer stadium in the team’s future.
New Mexico is now one of 36 professional clubs, that is apart of the United Soccer League.
It will be a Division II franchise, so there will be no direct link to the MLS, but plenty of players have played in both leagues.
The team will start up play next March, and they will play at Isotopes Park in their inaugural season — a location the franchise thought had more amenities than the UNM Soccer Stadium across the street.
“I think this is one of the best stadiums in the country. To bring this professional soccer team to New Mexico, we wanted to play in the best park we had, and when we put the soccer field down on top it’s going to look phenomenal. We’re really excited,” USL New Mexico President Peter Trevisani said.
The team has partnered with the city and the Isotopes to lease out the park for at least the first couple of seasons. This isn’t a new idea for the USL, however, as multiple teams in the league have used baseball stadiums to house soccer teams.
The USL prefers teams to have a soccer-specific stadium, so that is on the agenda for this club.
The team still needs a name, but there is no word on when that might be revealed.
City council commissioned a study on building a soccer stadium in the downtown area for a different team. The results came out in January. A 10,000 seat stadium would cost anywhere from $25 to $45 million.