RENO – Reno 1868 FC and Major League Soccer’s San Jose Earthquakes came to terms on a two-year affiliation beginning in 2017, both teams announced today. With the affiliation, Reno becomes the sole domestic professional affiliate serving San Jose.
The affiliation announcement comes after Reno 1868 FC revealed the following over the previous nine months: an official name, wordmark, colors, crest, adidas® partnership and most recently, the 2017 home kit featuring Nevada Cobalt Blue as the primary color.
“We are thrilled to join sides with one of the charter members of MLS in San Jose,” said Reno 1868 FC President Eric Edelstein. “We look forward to seeing talented players from the first team and seeing the next generation of Earthquakes players, while also having our fan base learn and grow from the Quakes’ passionate supporters.”
"I am pleased at the progress that we have seen from Reno since the franchise was introduced as an expansion USL team late last year," said Jake Edwards, President of the USL. "Led by world-class ownership in Herb Simon and a tremendous management team, Reno 1868 FC has done a wonderful job in promoting its team and engaging its followers with announcements and events that introduced team colors, its crest and uniform to hosting both a Liverpool U-21 friendly and a neutral-site USL game. Combined with its partnership with San Jose, we look forward to great success on and off the field for Reno 1868."
The Earthquakes have won two MLS Cup titles (2001, 2003) and two Supporters’ Shields (2005, 2012). U.S National Team stalwarts Landon Donovan and Chris Wondolowski have taken the pitch for San Jose as well during its storied history.
"We are excited to partner with Reno 1868 FC as our USL affiliate to strengthen our player development system," said Earthquakes President Dave Kaval. “Sacramento Republic FC has been a tremendous partner over the past two seasons and we wish them great success. The affiliation with Reno 1868 allows our club to have control over all aspects of the technical side of the club, which is critical for our overall player development strategy. We plan to put a very competitive team on the field next season and beyond for the Reno community."
“Our affiliation with Reno ensures there is no gap in the club’s development pyramid and offers our players a team at every level from youth to professional,” said Earthquakes technical director Chris Leitch. “Having a fully-integrated USL team will also allow the Earthquakes to expand their professional player roster beyond the 28 at the MLS level and provides the opportunity for rehab assignments and minutes to maintain both fitness and form.”
Greater Nevada Field will host up to 18 matches in 2017, with 15 coming as regular-season matches for Reno 1868 FC during their inaugural campaign in the United Soccer League.
In the first-ever United Soccer League match played at Greater Nevada Field on June 11, Sacramento Republic FC defeated Real Monarchs SLC by a 2-1 score on in front of 5,182 in attendance. Prior to that, Republic FC and Liverpool FC U21s played to a 2-2 draw in downtown Reno on May 25, a night which saw 6,287 fans flood through the gates.
“The feedback from our community has been tremendous, and we look forward to collaborating with San Jose as we expand our fan base,” said Edelstein.
The away kit and coaching staff will be announced at a later date.