On March 4th, MLS NEXT announced on that Texas United had joined their platform through the early admissions phase of the application process. This announcement sent shockwaves throughout the north Texas soccer landscape, as the talent-rich and uber-competitive youth soccer market is home to some of the nations most coveted youth academies. Given how competitive it is to build teams within the recruitment windows here, new clubs often form allegiances and partnerships with existing teams and coaches to compete.
After several unproductive attempts to host and facilitate their own tryout events, Texas United's leadership came to this very realization and eventually formed an allegiance with Dallas Texans academy. Dallas Texans Academy is a nationally respected club, with an elite pedigree and storied history as a former member club of the USSF DA platform. Although it was never officially acknowledged by either Club, for the past 6 months, it’s been well known locally that both Texas United and Dallas Texans were sharing the same player pools/rosters and training staff. Effectively, Dallas Texans Academy players were playing the MLS Next games rostered under the Texas United shield, while simultaneously being rostering to play ECNL games as the Dallas Texans.
So awesome, those youth players are getting to play multiple games each week within the top league platforms, what's the big deal?
For 6 months, Texas United fielded competitive teams into the MLS Next league’s platform without any formal issues. However, FUT411 has now confirmed that the allegiance must end, effective immediately. We have confirmed that MLS Next league office has reported that a complaint was filed against Texas United, which raised concerns of rostering rules and compliance. The claims are confirmed to be regarding their shared player pool and coaching staff, which according to league rules should be full-time and dedicated to their club solely. So basically, Texas United can't use any players signed to another club on a competing national platform (ECNL), and they can't have coaches participating who are employed by other clubs. MLS has sent Texas United officials written notice of this non-compliance, and has given them a window of time to resolve the conflicts and field dedicated rosters into their platforms. Window of time to resolve the conflicts. Which includes fielding dedicated rosters into the MLS platform.
This weekend, they were originally set to travel to play vs Real Colorado (11/14), however the purchased flights and hotels are null with the league's decision to reschedule all Texas United MLS next matches until they are compliant. As many of those families won't be eligible to even continue the season with Texas United, clearly this decision has upset many Dallas Texans parents who've invested into the travel expenses associated with playing in the league.
It is important to note, that Texas United has not been expelled from the MLS Next league at this time, as they will be allowed to continue their season assuming they achieve compliance. As always, we'll keep looking into the how this situation unfolds, and we'll report updates as we learn more. Join our FB group to discuss and share your thoughts.