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MLS expansion hopefuls: Indy Eleven, Sacramento Republic FC each hit season ticket milestones | SIDELINE

Sacramento Republic crest

Photo Credit: 
Courtesy of Sacramento Republic FC

Neither one of the following lower-division soccer franchises have even played a single game in their clubs' history, yet each recently reached significant season-ticket deposit milestones, and for that deserve a small bit of recognition for their early endeavors as professional sports organizations.

Indy Eleven — home stadium on the campus of IUPUI in Indianapolis — were only officially unveiled as the 12th franchise of the NASL in January, but only last week crossed the 5,000 season-ticket deposit barrier, a considerable achievement for a club set to play in a 12,100-person capacity stadium.

Somewhere in the 4,000 range just last Wednesday, more than 500 deposits were made following last Thursday's International Champions Cup match between Chelsea and Inter Milan (attendance: 41,983) at Lucas Oil Stadium. Indy Eleven hope to reach 7,000 season-ticket holders before their inaugural game in April 2014.

For more about Indy Eleven, visit their official website.

Sacramento Republic FC — home stadium of 20,311 capacity in Sacramento, Calif. — have been taking season-ticket reservations considerably less time than Indy Eleven, but last Wednesday took 1,000 season-ticket reservations within the first five hours of being made available.

Their official team name unveiled only last month, Sacramento Republic will open USL PRO play in 2014. Sacramento Republic have made considerable headlines over the last month, announcing a very famous head coach in American soccer circles, and this very well-done club anthem video.

For more about Sacramento Republic FC, visit their official website.

With Don Garber's statement on July 31 that MLS will expand to 24 teams by 2020, the race is clearly on between each and every NASL and USL PRO team — Indy Eleven and Sacramento Republic included, not against just time, but also one another — with dreams of one day joining Major League Soccer.

For now, Indy Eleven and Sacramento Republic FC are a couple of names to keep an eye on, fast starters out of the blocks with still lots more season tickets to sell, stadiums to build and games to win.