USL Releases Players From Contracts for Minnesota, Carolina and Miami FC
Inside Minnesota Soccer had learned that United Soccer League President Tim Holt has released the players from USL-1 teams Minnesota, Carolina and Miami FC from their contracts. In an email on Friday and addressed to all players from the 3 teams they were told that they were being released from their contracts. Minnesota Thunder executives Djorn Buchholz and Manny Lagos confirmed that their players had indeed been sent an email stating their release but refuted the league’s stance.
Minnesota Thunder President Manny Lagos said he did not want to make a statement at this time for concern of destabilizing an already tentative situation. He did confirm that the team had spent the better part of the day contacting players and informing them that the players are under contract with the team and not the USL and that they are still indeed under contract with the Minnesota Thunder.
*It has also been confirmed that Vancouver and Montreal, who are still supportive of the TOA, did not renew their contracts with the League for 2010 either but their players did not receive letters because their teams are still active in the USL-1 playoffs.
Holt told IMS last August that each team must renew their contract with the league each year or lose their franchise rights. “There’s no leave of absence clause,” stated Holt. “Each franchise must recommit annually and compete in every season. If they do not, then they do not retain their franchise rights.”
Sources have told IMS that the Minnesota Thunder, Carolina RailHawks and Miami FC Blues have not renewed their contracts for the 2010 season. Those renewals were due September 1, and would now be over 30 days past due. Those same three teams have been leading the way for the TOA and their demands for more control of the league.
Inside Minnesota Soccer will continue to track these events and later today will be posting a copy of the letter sent from the USL front office to the players.
* This is correction from the earlier post that said the teams were signed with the league for 2010. Another source confirmed that this was not true and those two teams ARE NOT signed with the league yet for 2010.