New York City FC announced an affiliation deal with USL side San Antonio FC on Thursday for the upcoming season.
“We believe this will be a mutually beneficial relationship which will allow us to share ideas and knowledge on team and coaching development between the two clubs," sporting director Claudio Reyna said in NYCFC's announcement of the deal. “In addition, our younger players can benefit from access to playing time in a competitive league at a club with a strong vision for the future and a clear identity on the field.
“This is an exciting announcement for both clubs and I’m looking forward to seeing the benefits that both teams can reap from it.”
San Antonio FC entered USL last year as an expansion side, going 10-12-8 in their inaugural season and finishing 10th in the Western Conference.
“We are delighted to have the opportunity to partner with New York City FC as we continue to shape the ambitious future of San Antonio FC," managing director Tim Holt said in a statement."NYCFC has quickly established itself as one of the highest performing clubs in Major League Soccer, and there is a considerable amount we can learn from their successful sporting and business models."
NYCFC were previously affiliated to the Wilmington Hammerheads, who now play in the USL Premier Development League, leaving City without a USL affiliate. With Thursday's announcement, 21 of 22 current MLS teams, along with 2018 expansion side Los Angeles FC either operate or are affiliated with teams in USL. Minnesota United have yet to formally announce a USL affiliation.