USL’s vote on promotion, relegation framework tabled until after mid-year meetings: Sources


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The United Soccer League will not be holding a vote on whether to incorporate a promotion and relegation framework into the leagues’ ecosystem at next week’s mid-year meetings, sources told The Athletic on Thursday.

According to sources briefed on the league’s plans, clubs were notified this week that the vote would be tabled until an undefined later date. Sources were granted anonymity due to the pending nature of the discussion.

A league spokesperson declined to comment on voting matters at the upcoming meetings, but confirmed competition structure changes, including promotion and relegation, will be a key topic and that the league will provide an update after the meetings.

There are multiple reasons for the delay; however, one club source was quick to clarify that this was not a “dead end” for the initiative. The clubs have been given no reason to believe the change in competitive format is at risk of failing to reach a vote.

Instead, sources cited a lack of clarity around what, specifically, was being voted on at this juncture as well as the specifics of what a vote in favor of the motion would indicate. As a result, the meetings will help clarify what needs refining over additional time before this can eventually see a vote.

League executives have been working on putting a motion toward an open system over the last 18 months, two sources independently stated.

Among the biggest questions which stakeholders are raising concern are financial matters, particularly how much of the potential increase in sponsorship and broadcast revenue would be directed to the clubs. There are additional clarifications needed about how the initial divisions would be determined.

The USL has regular board of governors meetings, but much of the biggest decisions funnel toward two events: the mid-year meetings (which take place next week in Colorado Springs) and the USL winter summit, which often takes place in January.

Sources had not been told to expect a vote at the upcoming Winter Summit, though they also had no reason to rule that potential out entirely.

Instead of holding a vote at the end of next week’s mid-year meetings, the league’s board of governors will have working sessions to discuss their areas of concern and work through the logistics necessary to best execute this structure. The second-division Championship and third-division League One have separate board of governors meetings as well as a joint session on the schedule.

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(Photo: Williams Paul / Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

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Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams
Alexandra Williams is a writer and editor. Angeles. She writes about politics, art, and culture for LinkDaddy News.

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