Falcon Partners with United Soccer League to Grow the Game
Becca Hubert | Sep 6, 2023
It’s been over a year since we became the preferred supplier of container-based structures for the United Soccer League (USL). Since then, we’ve been cultivating relationships across the USL’s many leagues, and we’ve been leaning into its vision to grow the sport of soccer in the United States. Several members of our team recently joined the USL Mid-Year Meeting and Summer Showcase in Colorado Springs, where we revealed a catalog of custom floorplans and modified container solutions specified to USL’s standards. Our team shared more about the experience and the trajectory of our partnership.
Laying the Foundation for Soccer Interest
At the heart of the USL’s purpose is a desire to grow soccer across America. With the States co-hosting the 2026 Men's World Cup, the USL had the foresight to capitalize on the impending excitement now. Much of that strategy starts at the local level.
“They want to make sure that soccer is not only accessible in the United States, but very feasible and interesting to everybody who hasn’t played it before,” said David Hill, Account Executive at Falcon Structures. “They want it to be for the community.”
Krista Short, VP of Marketing, David Hill, Account Executive, and Stephen Shang, CEO, in Colorado Springs for the USL Mid-Year Meeting and Summer Showcase
The United Soccer League is the largest and fastest-growing professional soccer organization in North America. They reach and cater to many demographics, including two men's professional leagues, the USL Championship and League One, and the upcoming professional women's USL Super League. They also have two pre-professional leagues for men and women, one elite player development platform in the USL Academy, and a national youth platform in USL Super Y League. These clubs are deeply rooted in their communities and continuously growing, with over 84 million people identifying as USL fans already.
“The clubs want to work with smaller cities,” said Falcon Structures CEO, Stephen Shang. “They want to create a fan base - a loyal fan base. And that’s really what makes USL tick.”
The USL is hoping that by creating homes for teams across the United States, the magic of soccer will do its work and garner greater interest.
Scaling for Soccer Growth
With a range of club experience levels and fan sizes, the USL has the unique challenge of assisting teams in varying stages of growth. Where a small youth league might have a single field to call their own, a Championship League team (like the Switchbacks FC, whose stadium we had the pleasure of touring) may have a well-developed facility. Thanks to the modular nature of Falcon’s container structures, we can assist clubs wherever they are in their growth.
Weidner Field, home of the USL Championship team Switchbacks FC
“Specifically with teams that are just now starting, we’re thinking along the lines of locker rooms, concession stands, bathrooms,” said Hill. “But with teams that are already developed and growing, they need additional space for concession stands for tailgating, maybe VIP suites for a great view and comfortable environment.”
The challenge USL hopes to see is rapid growth. But instead of clubs having to sacrifice the capital up front for facilities large enough to host a substantial fan base in a few years, they can approach it modularly.
“We saw places where they could add a press box, a bathroom, different container solutions they’ll need as they grow as a team,” Shang said. “If it’s modular, you can add more to it.”
Catering to Club Needs
After 20 years of designing and manufacturing modified shipping containers, Falcon feels confident in using that experience to venture into the world of sports and entertainment. Our engineers developed a catalog of new products to meet the needs of growing clubs. We’re excited to have finalized new designs that meet the USL clubs' needs , like concessions, bathrooms, locker rooms, VIP boxes, coaches’ offices, and even a multi-container team headquarters.
A USL-specific floor plan for a full team headquarters, comprised of four 40-foot containers
Krista Short, the VP of Marketing at Falcon, is eager to see how our facilities will lay the groundwork for soccer growth in the next few years. “The World Cup will spark excitement with a new fan base, and we want USL teams to be ready with facilities that foster connections only soccer can create.”
When asked where he sees Falcon’s partnership with USL in a few years, Shang said, “I think we’ll have facilities or container-based structures at multiple stadiums across the country. I think we’ll celebrate the wins with USL and just really ride that wave together of the United States embracing soccer.”
Here at Falcon Structures, we’re excited to continue this partnership. With our hard-earned experience and expertise as builders of modified shipping container structures, we’re delighted to play a part in growing what is often called “the world’s game.”
As Shang thoughtfully put it, “Soccer is so international, so just to be a part of that is exciting, right? You feel like you’re more a part of this big blue planet.”
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