The NASL was the name of the men's outdoor professional league that operated in the United States and Canada from 1968 to 1984 and played its final match 25 years ago last month. Legends such as Pele, Franz Beckenbauer and Johan Cruyff all starred in the league.
"By becoming the NASL, we are paying respect to the players, coaches and leaders who were pioneers for men's professional soccer in North America, many of whom remain involved and committed to the growth of our game in various capacities throughout the U.S. and Canada," said Selby Wellman, principal owner of the Carolina RailHawks and newly appointed president of NASL, LLC. "For that, we honor and thank them with a new era for the NASL. Further, by going with NASL, we're obligated to operate our league at a high standard befitting a name that means so much to the soccer community throughout North America. Our intention is to offer an elite brand of soccer and outstanding experience for our partners and fans, something the old NASL did very well during its day. We will do the same in the new NASL."
The new NASL consists of nine teams: Atlanta Silverbacks, Carolina RailHawks, Crystal Palace Baltimore, Miami FC, Minnesota Thunder, Montreal Impact, St. Louis Soccer United, Tampa Bay Rowdies and Vancouver Whitecaps FC.