United Premier Soccer League Announces Minnesota's Vlora City FC as Expansion Club
Founded in 2012, Twin Cities (Minn.)-Based Pro Development Club Joins UPSL
Based in Minneapolis (Minn.), Vlora City FC is operated by a Board of Directors and will begin UPSL play in the Midwest Conference North Division.
United Premier Soccer League Commissioner Yan Skwara said, "There is some great soccer in the Great White North, and we're pleased to welcome Vlora City FC to the Midwest Conference. Vlora City FC has done a great job on the field, progressing through each of the Minnesota Amateur Soccer League's four tiers, and now they want to take the next step. We wish Vlora City FC in its future."
Adi Bilandi, 30, is President of Vlora City FC. A native of Albania who played for the Albanian National Under-15 team, Bilandi immigrated to the United States as a teenager and played varsity soccer at Southwest Minneapolis (Minn.) High School before a collegiate career at Winona (Minn.) St. Mary's University.
A long-time amateur player in the Twin Cities area, Bilandi and a group of high school friends formed Vlora City FC in 2012, playing first in local leagues before progressing from Division 4 to Division 1 in the Minnesota Adult Soccer League (MASL).
Vlora City FC President Adi Bilandi said, "There's a lot more talent here in the Twin Cities, and I feel like all these kids need an opportunity and those are rare here in Minnesota. We want our club to grow, and we want these kids to have more possibilities to show their talents. Let's see if they can reach a different level, develop and grow and reach their dreams."
Mario Guevara, 29, serves as General Manager and leads a front office that includes Team Administrator Vincent Knox and Team Scout Foday Momeh. Alan Gorostieta, 31, is the team's Head Coach.
Guilherme Castro and Jason Lentz, a Vlora City FC player since its club's start, share the captaincy of the team.
"We want the club to be a trampoline for players for years to come, and hopefully things will change with U.S. Soccer because we're big believers in Promotion/Relegation,"
The club is currently exploring its venue options in compliance with UPSL's Minimum Standards. The team soon will announce its upcoming tryout and game schedule.
About Vlora City Football Club
Vlora City Football Club is an American Soccer club currently based in Minneapolis, Minn., and a new member of the United Premier Soccer League. Vlora City FC plays in the UPSL Pro Premier.
Founded in 2012, Vlora City FC can participate in the qualifying rounds for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup through their affiliation and membership with the UPSL, the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) and the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA).
United Premier Soccer League
The UPSL was formed in 2011 and currently includes more than 170 teams in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. UPSL is the fastest growing Pro Development League in the USA, with 200-plus teams targeted for 2018 Spring Season. Each UPSL team is individually owned and operated, and is responsible for maintaining either UPSL Pro Premier Division or Championship Division minimum standards.
UPSL teams are all eligible to participate in the U.S. Open Cup Qualifying Rounds through the leagues affiliation with the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) and the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA).
More information about UPSL can be found at www.upslsoccer.com or by following the league on Facebook (www.facebook.com/
Page Updated Last on: Jun 21, 2018