North American Soccer League

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This article is about the present-day Division II soccer league. For the original Division I major league that was active from 1968 to 1984, see North American Soccer League (1968–84).
North American Soccer League
North American Soccer League (NASL).svg
Country United States
Other club(s) from Canada
Puerto Rico
Confederation CONCACAF
Founded November 10, 2009
Number of teams 11 (Spring 2016)
12 (Fall 2016)
Level on pyramid Division II (US)
Division II (CAN)
Domestic cup(s) U.S. Open Cup
Canadian Championship
Current champions New York Cosmos
Current Woosnam Cup New York Cosmos
Most championships New York Cosmos (2 titles)
Most Woosnam Cups Carolina RailHawks (2 cups)
TV partners ESPN3 / ESPN Deportes
2016 NASL season

The North American Soccer League (NASL) is a professional men's soccer league with 12 teams: 9 in the United States, 2 in Canada and 1 in Puerto Rico. It is sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation (U.S. Soccer) as the Division II league in the American league system, under Major League Soccer (MLS) and above the USL (formerly, USL Pro). It is headquartered in New York City.

The league is named for, but has no connection to, the original North American Soccer League. The modern NASL was founded in 2009, and began play in 2011 with eight teams, following a 2010 season that saw NASL and USL teams play in a combined temporary Division II league.[1]

The NASL uses a split-season schedule running from April to early November, with a four-week break in July. The spring and fall champions, along with the two teams with best combined spring/fall records meet in a four-team single elimination tournament known as The Championship.[2] The winner of the final claims the Soccer Bowl at the end of the season. While there is no promotion and relegation with other leagues, Commissioner Bill Peterson has stated repeatedly that the league has an interest in introducing it to the pyramid.[3]


The NASL is owned and operated by its member teams through the Board of Governors. The Board consists of a representative of each member team. The Board oversees the League rules and regulations, governs the expansion and commercial strategy of the League, and oversees the league office.[4] Mark Frisch is the Chairman of the Board.[5]

NASL has no official tie to the former NASL that operated from 1968 to 1984.[6] Several of the present-day NASL teams, however, operate in cities where the former NASL had teams. In particular, the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Tampa Bay Rowdies, and New York Cosmos clubs share the same names and similar jersey designs as their NASL predecessors. The league has taken great pains to express its affinity to the earlier league, in fact inviting to their AGM Phil Woosnam, who wrote them a kind letter wishing their success in the new league.[7] The New York Cosmos have been particularly mindful of respecting the Cosmos' legacy, involving former players at all levels of the organization.

NASL does not have a salary cap.[8] NASL limits active rosters to 30 players and limits teams to seven foreign players.[4]

NASL teams have augmented their revenues by signing sponsorship deals. For example, the NY Cosmos landed Emirates Airline as a jersey sponsor,[9] FC Edmonton signed Sears Financial as a jersey sponsor,[10] and the Carolina RailHawks have had Blue Cross as their jersey sponsor since 2009.[11]

Competition format[edit]

The NASL began playing a split-season format in 2013. Similar to Liga MX, Central, and South American leagues, the schedule consisted of two competitions, Spring and Fall, with the winner of the Spring season earning the right to host the Fall champion in a one-game playoff, the Soccer Bowl. In 2014 the postseason was altered again with the introduction of The Championship: The NASL Spring Season and Fall Season champions are joined in the semi finals of The Championship by the two clubs with the next best overall records from both seasons combined. The semi final winners will compete in The Championship final. The NASL Spring Season and Fall Season champions will each host a semi final. The number one seed will be awarded to whichever of the Spring or Fall champions posts the better combined regular season record. The number three and number four seeds will be awarded to the next two clubs with the best overall records from both seasons combined. Clubs will retain their seeding throughout the postseason. The top-seeded semi final winner will host The Championship final. If the same club wins both seasons, the clubs with the second, third and fourth best overall records from both seasons combined will qualify for The Championship.[2]

The Spring Season runs from early April until July 4, and following a one-month break, the Fall season runs from early August until early November.[12] During the 2013 season, clubs played a 12-match Spring and 14-match Fall season. Due to the 2014 World Cup, however, NASL reportedly intends to play the vast majority of its schedule during the Fall to respect the international competition. The official Spring schedule for 2014 was released in December 2013 and features a nine-game, single round-robin format.[13][14] The Fall schedule will be released at a later date.

The split-season model has several intended benefits for NASL. A break in July that coincides with the international transfer window allows teams to acquire (or sell) players during the summer, providing ample time for new players to become acquainted with their new club and league. Secondly, NASL teams can use this break to generate additional revenue by hosting international friendlies or going on tour.[12] In prior NASL seasons, the competition featured 8 teams playing a 28-game regular season schedule, with 14 home and 14 away matches, meeting each opponent four times. The playoffs consisted of the top six clubs, with the first and second-ranked teams receiving a bye until the semi-final round. The bottom four competed in a knockout round before advancing to the semi-finals. Both the semi-final and the final rounds were played over two-legs, the winner advancing on aggregate goals.[15]

Similar to other American sports leagues (and unlike many European soccer leagues), NASL does not have automatic promotion or relegation for its member clubs. The champion of Division II NASL is not automatically promoted to Division I Major League Soccer, and the team finishing last in NASL is not automatically relegated to Division III USL. There are occasional opportunities, however, for successful teams in Divisions II and III that meet specific criteria (most critically, financial) to join MLS as an expansion team, as the Montreal Impact did following the 2011 season and Orlando City SC in the 2015 season from the USL Pro.

The Woosnam Cup was created before the 2013 season to be awarded by NASL supporters to the team with the highest season points total in order to recognize excellent play on the field throughout the entire year.[16] It replaces the regular season champion trophy that was awarded in 2011 and 2012 before the league adopted the split season format.

Other competitions[edit]

The Puerto Rico Islanders reached the semifinals of the 2008-09 CONCACAF Champions League: the best performance at the competition by an NASL club.

NASL teams also occasionally play in international competitions, most notably in the CONCACAF Champions League. The best Division II team performances to date were in the 2008-2009 Champions League, when the Puerto Rico Islanders reached the semifinals and the then-Division II Montreal Impact reached the quarterfinal round. NASL teams also play in the aforementioned international friendlies during the league's summer break.[17]

Teams playing in the NASL represent two separate CONCACAF members (the United States and Canada); in the past, and again from 2016, this will rise to three with the presence of a team from Puerto Rico. NASL's U.S. based teams play in the U.S. Open Cup, the winner of which provides one of the four US representatives in the CONCACAF Champions League. Division II teams have had some success in Cup play since MLS began, most notably in 1999 when the Rochester Rhinos won the title. Charleston Battery also reached the final in 2008, conceding the championship to D.C. United. NASL did not participate in the 2011 U.S. Open Cup during the league's first season, but joined the tournament in 2012 to some success as the Carolina RailHawks reached the Quarterfinals that year. In 2014, both the Carolina RailHawks and the Atlanta Silverbacks reached the Open Cup Quarterfinals.[18] The league's Canadian teams, FC Edmonton and Ottawa Fury F.C., participate in the Canadian Championship. This tournament consists of the Canadian Soccer Association's five professional clubs, the winner representing Canada in the CONCACAF Champions League. The Puerto Rico Islanders were invited to participate in the CFU Club Championship by the Caribbean Football Union representing Puerto Rico, participation in which allowed them to also enter the Champions League.



On August 27, 2009, multi-national sports company Nike agreed to sell its stake in the United Soccer Leagues (USL) to Rob Hoskins and Alec Papadakis of Atlanta-based NuRock Soccer Holdings, instead of to the USL Team Owner's Association (TOA), a group comprising the owners of several USL First Division clubs and St. Louis Soccer United. After the purchase, several prominent TOA members began to voice their concerns about the state of the league in general, its management structure and ownership model, the leadership of USL president Francisco Marcos, and about the sale of the league to NuRock, which the TOA felt was counter-productive and detrimental to the development of the league.

Within several weeks, a number of TOA member clubs threatened to break away from USL and start their own league. On November 10, 2009, six USL-1 clubs along with St. Louis applied for approval to create a new North American Division 2 league.[19] On November 20, 2009, one team from both USL-1 and USL-2 announced their intentions to join the new league,[20] taking the membership of the new league to nine teams.[21]

The official name of the league was announced on November 23, 2009.[22] According to the official press release, the NASL name is intended to "pay respect to the players, coaches and leaders who were pioneers for men's professional soccer in North America, many of whom remain involved and committed to the growth of the game in various capacities throughout the U.S. and Canada".

The USL issued several press releases questioning the legality of the teams choosing to break away, suggesting that it considered litigation to protect its interests and those of the USL-1 teams from any breach of contract.[23] The USL claimed that the NASL and the TOA ownership group was "interfering with USL-1 team owners that are contractually obligated to participate in the 2010 season" and "made several misleading statements in a variety of press releases to taint the reputation of USL and its long history of developing the sport of soccer."[24]

NASL's inaugural season was expected to begin play in April 2010.[25] However, after announcing that it would not sanction either the NASL or the USL First Division for 2010,[26] U.S. Soccer announced in January 2010 that it would run a temporary USSF Division 2 Professional League for the 2010 season that included 12 teams from both the NASL and USL-1, putting the NASL on hold for at least a year.[27]

League begins[edit]

Following the 2010 season, NASL consolidated its member clubs to meet the new Division 2 standards set out by U.S. Soccer. The NASL was provisionally approved by U.S. Soccer on November 21, 2010.[28] NASL [15] The provisional sanctioning was briefly revoked by U.S. Soccer in January 2011 due to the collapse of two of the ownership groups involved with NASL and serious questions about several others[29] but was reinstated before the 2011 season.[30][31]

David Downs was named league commissioner effective April 4, 2011.[32] Downs had previously worked for ABC Sports where he had secured the US television rights to every World Cup from 1994 to 2014, worked for Univision, and had been Executive Director of the unsuccessful US Bid Committee to bring the 2022 FIFA World Cup to the United States.[33] NASL began regular league play in April 2011 with eight members comprising former clubs from the USL First Division, the USL Second Division, plus expansion sides.[15]

Downs resigned after the end of the 2012 season, citing a desire to return to his home in New York.[32] Bill Peterson, formerly the Senior VP of AEG Sports and Managing Director of the Home Depot Center from 2000-2006, replaced Downs as commissioner.[34]

In July 2013, NASL teams took advantage of the break afforded by the new split-season schedule to host several international friendlies, including several matches against Mexican, Brazilian, and Guatemalan teams, while the N.Y. Cosmos traveled to London to play lower division English teams.[17]

In September 2015, NASL sent a letter to US Soccer president, Sunil Gulati, accusing US Soccer of antitrust violations should they adopt the proposed criteria for to be a sanctioned Division I soccer league. NASL took issue with three proposed changes: increasing the minimum stadium size to 15,000, increasing the minimum number of teams to 16, and changing the minimum population required in 75% of the teams from a population of 1 million to 2 million. NASL accused US Soccer of colluding with MLS to protect MLS's monopoly as the only Division I league in the United States.[35]


  1. ^ a b c Soccer-specific stadium
  2. ^ a b c d e Shared facility; not a soccer-specific stadium
  3. ^ Baseball park stadium
  4. ^ Redesigned ballpark for permanent soccer use


Puerto Rico FC Rayo OKC Miami FC Jacksonville Armada FC Ottawa Fury FC Indy Eleven New York Cosmos (2010) San Antonio Scorpions Puerto Rico Islanders Montreal Impact (1992–2011) Minnesota United FC FC Edmonton Carolina Railhawks Atlanta Silverbacks Fort Lauderdale Strikers Tampa Bay Rowdies

Current clubs   Former club   Club moved to MLS   Future clubs

Locations of NASL clubs. Red pog.svg Existing clubs; Blue pog.svg Future clubs

Founding members and expansion[edit]

Founding members[edit]

In late 2010 announced its formal bid to the USSF for Division 2 sanctioning with the required minimum eight teams.[28] With provisional approval for the league to begin play in 2011, eight clubs were officially confirmed to launch the inaugural season: Atlanta Silverbacks, Carolina RailHawks, FC Edmonton, Fort Lauderdale Strikers (formerly Miami FC), Montreal Impact, NSC Minnesota Stars, Puerto Rico Islanders and FC Tampa Bay.[15]

Four of these eight teams—the Carolina RailHawks, Miami FC, Minnesota United FC (formerly Minnesota Thunder/Stars) and Montreal Impact—played in the USL First Division in 2009, and were among the set of TOA teams that initiated the original breakaway from the USL. FC Tampa Bay had been scheduled to be a 2010 USL-1 expansion franchise, but switched to the NASL shortly after NASL was officially formed. The Atlanta Silverbacks played competitively in USL-1 in 2008, and spent 2009 on hiatus from the league prior to joining the NASL. FC Edmonton was an expansion team that was founded in 2010. The Puerto Rico Islanders played in the USL in the 2010 season.

Several teams scheduled to join NASL did not ultimately end up playing in NASL during the 2011 inaugural season. Crystal Palace Baltimore of the USL Second Division had planned to join the NASL, but announced in late 2010 that it would not play in NASL in 2011 due to a needed restructuring.[36] The Rochester Rhinos of the USL First Division joined NASL on November 30, 2009, but the Rochester Rhinos joined the new USL Pro League and has played there since 2011.[37][38] AC St. Louis, part of the initial TOA group that formed NASL, closed in late 2010 after only one season due to financial difficulties.[39] The Vancouver Whitecaps did not play in NASL in 2011 because the Vancouver Whitecaps FC joined MLS in 2011. The Minnesota Thunder ceased operations due to financial problems, and were replaced by the NSC Minnesota Stars under different ownership.

On March 25, 2015 it was announced that founding team, Minnesota, would become a Major League Soccer expansion side in either 2017 or 2018.

On December 22, 2015 it was announced that the city of San Antonio and Bexar County had purchased Toyota Field and S.T.A.R. Soccer Complex. Along with this came an agreement for Spurs Sports and Entertainment, owners of the San Antonio Spurs, to operate the facilities and field a team that plays in the United Soccer League, effectively folding the San Antonio Scorpions.[40]


Progression of NASL Expansion
Season # Teams
2011-2012 8
Spring 2013 7
Fall 2013 8
2014 10
2015-Spring 2016 11
Fall 2016 12

The league continued with eight teams in 2012, losing one team and adding one team, with the Montreal Impact joining Major League Soccer and the San Antonio Scorpions joining NASL as an expansion side.[41] The league played its 2013 spring season with seven teams, as the Puerto Rico Islanders suspended operations with uncertainty as to whether and how much of a government subsidy the Islanders would receive.[42] The New York Cosmos restored the league to eight teams when it joined for the fall 2013 season, playing its home games at Hofstra University's James M. Shuart Stadium.[43][44]

NASL's expansion into New York marked the first time the league expanded into a city where an MLS team was already present, marking the beginning of a slight shift in NASL expansion strategy, with NASL later considering expanding into other large markets with MLS teams, such as the northern Virginia suburbs of Washington DC, and Los Angeles.[45]

The NASL added two teams for the 2014 season: the Ottawa Fury FC and Indy Eleven of Indianapolis. The Ottawa Fury moved from the USL Premier Development League following the refurbishment of TD Place Stadium.[46][47] The Indy Eleven are playing at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis until they complete their own stadium.[48][49] In July 2013, the NASL awarded two new expansion franchises: Jacksonville Armada FC and Oklahoma City FC.[50][51] Jacksonville plays at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville and ultimately hopes to build its own stadium.[52] Oklahoma City would never begin play, although an expansion team was later awarded to Oklahoma City for 2016.

Planned future expansion[edit]

Oklahoma City FC were originally set to begin play in 2015 but along with Virginia Cavalry FC will not join the league. The Cavalry was originally announced as a 2014 expansion team to be based in the planned Edelman Financial Field in Ashburn, Virginia, but construction delays and failure to find a suitable alternative venue set back its debut to 2015.[53][54][55][56] In July 2014, a further delay was announced pushing their debut to 2016 as the team reorganizes its ownership group.[57] An NASL team in Oklahoma City was eventually announced for a 2016 launch when Spanish club Rayo Vallecano launched Rayo OKC in November 2015.[58]

The NASL has indicated its vision is to grow to 18 to 20 teams by 2018.[59] NASL Commissioner Bill Peterson has reported interest in Hartford.[60] Hartford had been home to the Connecticut Bicentennials which played in the previous version of the NASL. However, the priority remains to add more teams in the West, Midwest and Prairies, with an eye on placing teams in the 25 largest metropolitan areas without professional soccer teams in order to tap into greater media exposure and sponsor interest.[12][45][61] Peterson has said the focus to expansion is having the right ownership groups in the right cities.[62] NASL expansion conversations have taken place with interested parties from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, and Las Vegas.[63] Also, the owners of Detroit City FC have expressed a desire to join the NASL or USL in the near future and are currently seeking investors.[64] In addition, Peterson has criticized the MLS expansion plans in cities with existing NASL teams (Miami, Atlanta, Minneapolis, and San Antonio), suggesting a turf war and increased competition between the two leagues.[65]

In July 2014, it was reported that the NASL and the Canadian Soccer Association were looking into creating a seven team all Canadian league with the help of the CFL by 2016, thus establishing the first top tier fully Canadian league since Canadian Soccer League which folded in 1992.[66] The format would resemble Major League Baseball’s American and National leagues, with the Soccer Bowl taking place between the champions of the American-based NASL teams and the Canadian-based NASL teams to determine the overall NASL champion.[66] The Canadian soccer teams would partner with Canadian Football League teams and play in CFL stadiums.[67] The three existing Canadian MLS teams (Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal) would not be part of this league structure. FC Edmonton and Ottawa Fury would likely join this league. The Ottawa Fury is already affiliated with the CFL’s Ottawa Redblacks, both owned by Jeff Hunt. Meanwhile, no alliance currently exists between FC Edmonton and the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos.[68] The remaining potential NASL expansion sites with CFL-ties are Hamilton, Calgary, Winnipeg, and Saskatchewan.

In May 2015, the NASL announced that the 12th team in the league would be Miami FC. Located in Miami, Florida, the team is owned by international entrepreneur Riccardo Silva and former Italian international Paolo Maldini. The team will begin play in 2016.[69] In June 2015, Puerto Rico FC, owned by professional basketball player Carmelo Anthony, was announced as the league's 13th club.[70] The team will begin play in the 2016 NASL fall season.

Rivalry cups[edit]

NASL teams also participate in some rivalry matches. Supporters of Minnesota United FC and FC Edmonton created the Flyover Cup, a nod to the clubs' geographic location with respect to the rest of the league.[71] Starting in 2010 when the Tampa Bay Rowdies returned, the Florida Derby was revived with the creation of the Coastal Cup with the Fort Lauderdale Strikers. The Rowdies claimed the first four Coastal Cups, with the Strikers winning the Cup for the first time in 2014. In 2015 Jacksonville Armada FC made the competition three-way, and the 2016 expansion Miami FC will make it a four-club affair.

Derby Name Most Wins Titles Other Club(s) Titles Recent winner
Coastal Cup Tampa Bay Rowdies 4 Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Jacksonville Armada FC 2 Fort Lauderdale Strikers [72]
Flyover Cup Minnesota United FC 3 FC Edmonton 1 Minnesota United FC [73]



The North American Soccer League operates as a group of independent club owners as opposed to the single-entity structure of Major League Soccer. Each club is a shareholder in the league, with one vote each on issues such as rule changes and contracts. The league requires that each club has a lead shareholder that holds at least 35% ownership in the club and is worth at least $20M.[74]

The league now has 12 ownership groups for its 13 clubs. At one time Traffic owned three clubs and indirectly owned the largest stake in a fourth until Minnesota was divested. With the recent divestiture of Atlanta and Fort Lauderdale.[75] Traffic only holds interests in Carolina.


Sponsorships and kit producers
Team Kit Sponsor Annual Value Expires
Carolina RailHawks Adidas BCBS of NC Undisclosed Undisclosed
FC Edmonton Adidas The Fath Group Undisclosed Undisclosed
Fort Lauderdale Strikers Inaria Guaraviton Undisclosed Undisclosed
Indy Eleven Diadora Honda $1M 2016
Jacksonville Armada Nike Winn Dixie Undisclosed Undisclosed
Minnesota United Inaria Atomic Data[76] Undisclosed Undisclosed
New York Cosmos Nike Emirates $1M 2015
Ottawa Fury Admiral Heart and Crown[77] Undisclosed Undisclosed
Tampa Bay Rowdies Nike Hard Rock[78] Undisclosed Undisclosed
Miami FC Macron[79] Undisclosed 2018
Puerto Rico FC
Rayo OKC Nike

The league currently does not have any national sponsorship arrangements beyond using a specially designed soccer ball produced by Voit.[80] The design incorporates blue panels with a star designed inspired in the NASL logo, which will be featured prominently over the brand’s logo in the center. The deal replaces an arrangement the league had with Joma since 2011.[81] The league also reached a deal with Seiko to serve as the official time keeper of the NASL starting with the 2014 season. Seiko branding will be prominent on the fourth official’s substitution and timing boards, on goal line advertising boards, on the broadcast game clock and within the league’s official website[82]

Some NASL teams have been able to attract shirt sponsors over the past several seasons. The largest deal to date was the Cosmos signing Emirates through the 2015 season for $1M annually.[83] Toyota's sponsorship of the Scorpions is tied into several other sponsorship programs involving the team and team ownership.[84] Indy Eleven announced on October 1, 2013 that they had reached a three-year deal with Honda Manufacturing of Indiana LLC and central Indiana Honda dealers worth $1M annually to be the shirt sponsor for the team, the deal is on par with the one announced by the Cosmos earlier in the year.[85] The Rowdies announced they had reach a sponsorship agreement with Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tampa for the 2014 season. This became the first gambling related sponsorship within the league something common with clubs in other countries.

Beyond shirt sponsorship and kit production, teams have had varying success in establishing sponsorship packages with local and national brands. The San Antonio Scorpions were able to land numerous sponsorship arrangements with the opening of Toyota Field including an innovative sponsorship by CST brands Valero Corner Stores. The sponsorship arrangement with Valero involves stadium branding and sponsorship of all corner kicks at home games.[86]


Main article: List of NASL stadiums

Current NASL stadiums[edit]

Carolina RailHawks FC Edmonton Fort Lauderdale Strikers Indy Eleven Jacksonville Armada FC Miami FC
WakeMed Soccer Park Clarke Stadium Lockhart Stadium Michael A. Carroll Stadium Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville FIU Stadium
Capacity: 10,000 Capacity: 5,000 Capacity: 20,500 Capacity: 12,100 Capacity: 11,000 Capacity: 20,000
SASSoccerPark2.jpg 2008-0424-FL-LockhartStadium.jpg Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.JPG FIU Stadium.JPG
Minnesota United FC New York Cosmos Ottawa Fury FC Puerto Rico FC Rayo OKC Tampa Bay Rowdies
National Sports Center James M. Shuart Stadium TD Place Stadium Juan Ramón Loubriel Stadium Miller Stadium Al Lang Stadium
Capacity: 8,500 Capacity: 11,929 Capacity: 24,000 Capacity: 22,000 Capacity: 6,000 Capacity: 7,500
ThunderWizards.JPG TDPlace.jpg Orangestarsultra.jpg Rowdies Soccer Config 2015.jpg

Media and digital coverage[edit]

Television coverage
Team TV Partner(s)
Carolina Railhawks ESPN3, WRAL-TV
FC Edmonton CKEM-DT
Fort Lauderdale Strikers ESPN3, WSFL-TV
Indy Eleven ESPN3, WISH-TV
Jacksonville Armada ESPN3, WCWJ
Minnesota United ESPN3, KSTC-TV
New York Cosmos ONE World Sports
Ottawa Fury Rogers TV
Tampa Bay Rowdies ESPN3, WTTA Great 38[87]
Miami FC
Puerto Rico FC
Rayo OKC

In 2014 ESPN3 signed on as the national broadcast partner for NASL Soccer. ESPN3 produced a Game of the Week for the NASL. The first game in their broadcast agreement was Soccer Bowl 2013. It was broadcast on ESPN3 and ESPN Deportes and provided live nationwide coverage with 109 media credentials being issued.[88] The coverage was available for approximately 85 million households.[89]

The Cosmos, through ONE World Sports use 9 HD cameras for all their home games. Under the current structure, the home club is responsible for producing the television broadcasts so the quality of broadcasts can vary dramatically from team to team. For 2014, Indy became the first team to announce they would broadcast select road games through their local television partner.

Starting in the 2015 season, a minimum of 120 league matches will air live on ESPN3 in the U.S., ESPN Play in Latin America, and ESPN Player in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. In total it will reach 75 countries.[90] The NASL will continue to be covered across other ESPN platforms, including In addition, and all of the team websites were rewritten by the web development team at ezITsolutions of Atlanta, GA.[91] "The websites will have the ability to display seamlessly on iPhones, iPads, and Android devices." This is a change from an agreement reached by the league and the Perform Group in 2014 that provided live streaming of NASL matches as part of a monthly subscription package and the development of new websites for the league and teams.[92]


NASL Championship Logo
2014 NASL Championship logo
NASL Trophy Winners
Season The Championship
(Soccer Bowl)
Woosnam Cup
(Regular Season)
2011 NSC Minnesota Stars* Carolina RailHawks - -
2012 Tampa Bay Rowdies* San Antonio Scorpions - -
2013 New York Cosmos Carolina RailHawks Atlanta Silverbacks New York Cosmos
2014 San Antonio Scorpions Minnesota United FC Minnesota United FC San Antonio Scorpions
2015 New York Cosmos New York Cosmos New York Cosmos Ottawa Fury FC
- Spring & Fall Championships not instituted until 2013 season
* Denotes NASL Championship Series before current playoff format

Championship Results[edit]

Season Champions Score Runners–up Venue Attendance
2011 NSC Minnesota Stars 3–1 Fort Lauderdale Strikers National Sports Center
Lockhart Stadium
2012 Tampa Bay Rowdies 3–3dagger Minnesota Stars National Sports Center
Al Lang Stadium
2013 New York Cosmos 1–0 Atlanta Silverbacks Atlanta Silverbacks Park 7,211
2014 San Antonio Scorpions 2–1 Fort Lauderdale Strikers Toyota Field 7,847
2015 New York Cosmos 3–2 Ottawa Fury FC Shuart Stadium 10,166
dagger Match decided by a penalty shootout after extra time


  • The champion was determined by a two-game NASL Championship Series in 2011 and 2012, before switching to the current playoff format in 2013.

NASL club honors[edit]

NASL club records only include performance while team competed in the NASL. Current through 2015 Season. Order based on major honors (championships).

Team Seasons NASL Playoffs NASL Regular Season Domestic
Total Honors Major Honors / Championships
Soccer Bowl Winner Soccer Bowl Runner-Up Woosnam Cup Winner Split Season Winner (2013+) Woosnam Cup Runner-Up Winner USOC - Top NASL club
New York Cosmos 2.5 2 - 1 2 - - 1 5 3
Minnesota United FC 5 1 1 1 1 - 1 5 2
San Antonio Scorpions 4 1 - 1 1 1 - 1 5 2
Carolina RailHawks 5 - - 2 - - - 2 4 2
Puerto Rico Islanders 2 - - - - 1 2 n/a 3 2
Tampa Bay Rowdies 5 1 - - - 2 - 3 1
Atlanta Silverbacks 5 - 1 - 1 - - 1 3 0
Fort Lauderdale Strikers 5 - 2 - - - - 2 0
Ottawa Fury FC 2 - 1 - 1 1 - - 3 0

Individual records[edit]

Bold denotes players still playing in the NASL.[94]

Statistics as of November 2015; Goals as of November 18, 2015



Stadium attendances are a significant source of regular income for the NASL and its clubs. The average and total attendances are listed below.

NASL regular season average attendance (excludes playoffs)
2011 2,866 3,353 1,817 3,769 - - 1,676 11,507 - - 2,161 - 3,010 3,770 [95]
2012 4,505 3,883 1,525 3,615 - - 2,796 - - - 1,864 9,176 3,116 3,806 [96]
Spring 2013 5,042 4,707 2,059 4,314 - - 5,338 - - - - 7,140 4,037 4,662 [73][97]
Fall 2013 4,364 4,709 2,761 4,223 - - 3,680 - 6,849 - - 6,763 4,050 4,675 [73][98]
Spring 2014 4,730 5,364 3,569 3,825 10,465 - 5,157 - 4,323 2,684 - 6,476 4,998 5,267
Fall 2014 3,751 4,180 3,297 4,177 10,465 - 9,234 - 4,915 4,961 - 6,909 4,300 5,619
Spring 2015 4,760 5,160 2,764 6,351 10,400 9,758 9,192 - 6,719 4,377 - 6,477 5,700 6,514
Fall 2015 - - - - - - - - - - - 6,866 -
2015 4,024 4,539 2,889 4,518 9,809 7,927 8,748 - 4,984 5,406 - 6,736 5,648 5,912 [99]
Bold denotes league's highest attendance that season.


  • Bill Peterson - Commissioner[100]
  • Brian Melekian - Chief Operating Officer
  • Rishi Sehgal - Director of Business Development & Legal Affairs
  • Toan Hang - Director of Finance
  • Neal Malone - Director of Public Relations
  • Steven Torres - Manager of Public Relations, International/Hispanic Media
  • Daniel Kaufman - Accountant

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "FC Edmonton wins first-ever NASL game". The Soccer Room. April 10, 2011. Retrieved October 7, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "NASL: NASL Clubs To Compete For 'The Championship'". 
  3. ^ "NASL's response to MLS: Promotion-relegation is viable in North America". Sports Illustrated. August 6, 2014. Retrieved September 3, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "NASL 2012 Media Guide" (PDF). July 19, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Jacksonville Armada owner Mark Frisch elected chairman of NASL board of governors". 
  6. ^ "NASL 2011 Media Guide" (PDF). November 7, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Letter from Phil Woosnam". Archived from the original on November 23, 2011. 
  8. ^ "New York Cosmos return to NASL is first step in franchise revival - Grant Wahl -". July 13, 2012. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ "New York Cosmos Land Emirates Airline Sponsorship Deal | North American Soccer League". June 4, 2013. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  10. ^ "FC Edmonton Announce Sears Financial as Jersey Sponsors | North American Soccer League". March 31, 2011. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  11. ^ "News". Carolina RailHawks. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b c Cesar Diaz (October 2, 2012). "Q & A with N.A.S.L. Commissioner David Downs". New York Times Soccer Blog. Retrieved August 7, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Home -". 
  14. ^ "NASL Confirms Mid-Season Break To Accommodate 2014 FIFA World Cup". Retrieved December 10, 2013. 
  15. ^ a b c d "NASL Provisionally Sanctioned by USSF". November 21, 2010. Retrieved November 23, 2010. 
  16. ^ "Phillip A. Woosnam Memorial Cup". December 10, 2013. Retrieved December 10, 2013. 
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