San Diego Loyal SC
|Full name||San Diego Loyal Soccer Club|
|Founded||June 20, 2019|
|Executive VP||Landon Donovan|
|2020||4th, Western Conference|
San Diego Loyal Soccer Club is an American professional soccer team based in San Diego, California. The team was founded by Warren Smith and Landon Donovan. San Diego Loyal made its debut in 2020 as an expansion team in the USL Championship.
On June 20, 2019, San Diego was awarded an expansion team in the USL Championship to debut in 2020 or 2021. Warren Smith, one of the co-founders of Sacramento Republic FC, was named the President of the new club. Former USMNT, LA Galaxy, and San Jose Earthquakes player Landon Donovan, was named the Executive Vice President of Soccer Operations. He was named as the club's first manager on November 14. The team's name and crest were developed through fan engagement to reflect the interests of the city. On March 7, 2020, the team played their first competitive match, a 1–1 draw against Las Vegas Lights FC.
The Loyal forfeited a league match against LA Galaxy II on September 25, 2020, following the alleged use of a racial slur by Omar Ontiveros against Elijah Martin, one of the Loyal's Black players. The match had been played to a 1–1 draw and Ontiveros was later suspended for seven matches by the USL Championship. A week later, the team forfeited another match against Phoenix Rising FC by walking out after halftime following the alleged use of a homophobic slur against Collin Martin, an openly gay player, by Junior Flemmings. As a result of the two forfeits, the Loyal failed to qualify for the USL playoffs.
The team signed a three-year letter of commitment to play at Torero Stadium. Moreover, the initial three-year commitment comes with a series of one-year options for the following four years. The team will initially focus on building a fan base and brand at Torero, noting that the stadium could be expanded to a capacity of 8,000. Moreover, the team noted the possibility of sharing the prospective San Diego State University Aztec Stadium, at a 35,000 capacity, as a potential site for future years if they can cultivate the fan support.
The first recognized supporters group established to support the team was The Locals Supporters Group.
|Period||Kit manufacturer||Shirt sponsor|
Players and staff
- As of June 2, 2021
- USL Academy player
Management and staff
|EVP of soccer operations, manager||Landon Donovan|
|Associate head coach||Nate Miller|
|Assistant coach||Tim Daniels|
|Goalkeeping coach||Matt Hall|
|Senior advisor||Paul Buckle|
|Senior advisor||Shannon MacMillan|
|Front office staff|
|President & CEO||Warren Smith|
- As of September 30, 2020
|San Diego Loyal SC|
|Season||USL Championship||Playoffs||U.S. Open Cup||Top Scorer 1||Head Coach||Team Captain(s)|
|Did not qualify||Cancelled||Rubio Rubin||7||Landon Donovan||Sal Zizzo|
^ 1. Top Scorer includes statistics from league matches only.
- Includes USL Regular Season, USL Playoffs, U.S. Open Cup. Excludes friendlies.
|Landon Donovan||United States||November 14, 2019||present||16||6||5||5||37.50|
- "Second-division USL team in San Diego prepares to start in 2020". San Diego Union-Tribune. September 17, 2019.
- Diego, USL San (October 1, 2019). "SAN DIEGO NATIVE ANDREW VASSILIADIS ANNOUNCED AS CHAIRMAN". San Diego Loyal SC.
- "DEANDRE YEDLIN JOINS SAN DIEGO LOYAL SC OWNERSHIP GROUP". SDLoyal.com. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
- USLSoccer com Staff (June 19, 2019). "United Soccer League Awards USL Championship Franchise in San Diego Market". USL Championship. Retrieved June 20, 2019.
- "Landon Donovan to bring pro soccer to San Diego". fox5sandiego.com. June 19, 2019. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
- Zeigler, Mark (September 16, 2019). "Second-division USL team in San Diego prepares to start in 2020". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
- "Executives". www.uslsandiego.com. Retrieved June 20, 2019.
- "Landon Donovan, Warren Smith bring USL to San Diego". SI.com. Retrieved June 20, 2019.
- "San Diego Loyal Announces Landon Donovan as Manager". San Diego Loyal SC. Retrieved November 14, 2019.
- Ziegler, Mark (September 25, 2020). "San Diego Loyal forfeit soccer game to protest racial incident". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved October 1, 2020.
- Ziegler, Mark (October 1, 2020). "San Diego, Phoenix soccer teams trade accusations, denials in alleged homophobic incident". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved October 1, 2020.
- Bumbaca, Chris (October 1, 2020). "San Diego Loyal forfeits match after opposing player allegedly directed homophobic slur at Collin Martin". USA Today. Retrieved October 1, 2020.
- Ziegler, Mark (September 30, 2020). "San Diego Loyal walks off field after alleged homophobic slur; Phoenix player issues denial". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved October 1, 2020.
- "Second-division USL soccer team coming to San Diego". San Diego Union-Tribune. June 19, 2019. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
- "SD Loyal Supporter Groups". San Diego Loyal SC. Retrieved October 1, 2020.
- "KITTED OUT: SD Loyal Announces Partnership with Adidas". USLChampionship.com Staff. January 18, 2020. Retrieved January 18, 2020.
- "2021 Roster". sdloyal.com. Retrieved April 6, 2021.
- "Administration". San Diego Loyal SC. Retrieved November 16, 2019.
- "Technical Staff". San Diego Loyal SC. Retrieved November 16, 2019.