The following article was written by Sarah Cardamone on 1/24/2017. View the original article.
The Charleston Battery has agreed to formal affiliations with three Premier Development League (PDL) clubs for the 2017 season, the club announced Tuesday morning.
Following the announcement of the League’s Division II status, the USL side executed mutually beneficial partnerships with the Myrtle Beach Mutiny, Tri-Cities Otters, and South Georgia Tormenta FC. The Battery has had informal partnerships with PDL clubs in the past, but the Club’s front office staff viewed the shift in the U.S. Soccer structure as an opportunity to expand on the agreements.
“We’re pleased to formally partner with the three PDL clubs,” said Charleston Battery Vice President Mike Kelleher. “The Battery and the USL have grown tremendously over the last couple of years and these agreements fit into the overall plan we have for the Club moving forward. The PDL partnerships allow us to continue to expand our scouting network and community reach beyond the Charleston area.”
The PDL is currently organized and sponsored by the USL and is recognized as the top level of men’s amateur soccer in the United States. South Georgia Tormenta FC, Tri-Cities Otters, and Myrtle Beach Mutiny will play in the South Atlantic Division for the 2017 PDL season. The Myrtle Beach club previously competed in the NPSL, winning two conference titles during their time in the league.
The partnerships will kick off later this month with Open Player Trials. Each club is expected to send two players to Charleston’s trials on January 27-28th.
“We’ve seen it before, players can move quickly through the ranks,” said Charleston Battery Head Coach Mike Anhaeuser. “With our links to the MLS and the people we have coming to watch our games, you never know where these players might end up.”
The Battery will work together with its PDL affiliates on youth camps, merchandise sales, ticket sales and other ventures throughout the year. The partnerships will allow the Battery to expand its brand and expose new groups of people to the Club’s unique tradition and place in U.S. soccer history.