EAGAN, Minn — Minnesota Aurora FC will remain in the pre-professional USL-W league for now.
In a social media post on Tuesday, the team said despite garnering interest from the professional National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) and USL Super League, "the timeline proved too short for us to secure the necessary investments to join a professional league for 2024."
Aurora management said they'll "continue to pursue our vision of fielding a professional women's soccer team in Minnesota." Until then, the team was already scheduled to return to the USL-W for the 2023 season.
The Aurora finished their inaugural season in the USL W League undefeated with an 11-0-1 record and lost in the USL W League Championship in overtime. In the team's first season of play, the Aurora's fan attendance rivaled those of teams in the NWSL, which is the top professional women's soccer league in the country.
The Aurora's first season was bankrolled through a unique community ownership partnership; however, to join the ranks of a professional league, a much larger investment is necessary. The team previously announced it was seeking investors that met certain net worth and income requirements who were willing to invest a minimum of $500,000.
The team's board was planning to present bids to NWSL and USL, which is launching the USL Super League in 2023. Under United States Soccer Federation regulations, pro teams need to have an individual who owns 35% of the team and "meets high standards of wealth."
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