Some unfortunate news popped up today for anyone hoping to see even more pro soccer come to Southern California. The long rumored North American Soccer League club that was destined for the Golden State has apparently lost its main backer.
Scratching The Pitch reports that Joe Sumner, whose claim to fame is being the son of legendary pop singer Sting, has lost interest in investing in the project. His hesitation apparently comes from mounting legal fees that would come from the NASL's antitrust lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation.
The NASL alleges that the USSF changed their requirements for a league meeting first-division standards to protect Major League Soccer and keep them as the sole top league in the country.
In such a lawsuit, each owner in the NASL would have to kick in an equal amount to pay for legal fees and Sumner is apparently not willing to do that.
We first learned of interest in a potential SoCal team in December. The plan was for the club to play in somewhere in Orange County. This made headlines because of Sting's apparent involvement in the ownership group with his son. However, it appears as if this project has hit the wall thanks to the lawsuit.
The report also states that the investment group took travel into account when pulling their interest. Having so few west coast teams in the NASL would make away trips brutal on a potential SoCal team.
For the NASL and Orange Country it looks like it's back to the drawing board after yet another rumored link to expansion in the region has died in the past couple years. They'll need another ownership group to step up to get project up and running once again.
For now, an MLS franchise, two USL teams, and the wait for LAFC will have to hold over soccer fans in the area.
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