Image: Jesus Miguel Garcia / Two Ten Soccer
San Antonio FC will serve as the USL affiliate for New York City FC, per MLSSoccer.com. The two clubs had the same affiliation for the 2017 season.
Per MLSSoccer.com, Nineteen of the twenty-three active MLS teams have either affiliates or USL squads under the MLS club ownership for the 2018 season. Columbus Crew SC, Minnesota United FC, New England Revolution, and Orlando City SC have no USL affiliate. Orlando City B served as the central Florida club’s USL squad in the past, but chose to not participate in the 2018 season.
While many fans and media thought the NYCFC affiliation to be mostly about fulfilling front office requirements, SAFC Managing Director Tim Holt told Texas Soccer Radio that the agreement has been more about the technical, on-field side of things. The transfer of former SAFC defender Sebastien Ibeagha to NYCFC and the signing of former NYCFC midfielder Mikey Lopez to SAFC are clear indications the two clubs are communicating on player movement. Defender Ryan Felix also spent time on trial with NYCFC in the 2018 preseason before signing with SAFC.
Fans shouldn’t expect much in-season player movement between the clubs, but the potential for players to move up to NYCFC or find more playing time at SAFC seems to be on the table.
NYCFC is owned by City Football Group and Yankee Global Enterprises. SAFC is owned by Spurs Sports and Entertainment.