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USL Championship, Riverhounds season suspension and training moratorium extended

File photo by Ed Thompson

USL Championship, Riverhounds season suspension and training moratorium extended

On Thursday, the United Soccer League (USL) upon approval from the USL Championship’s Board of Governors, the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC and USL Championship temporary season suspension has been extended.

Previously, the league announced the season would be suspended through May 10. With this timeline no longer tenable, the USL will await further guidance and clarity from local, state and national health authorities before announcing a new earliest return-to-play date.

Earlier in the week, when reaching out to club officials, Pittsburgh Soccer Now was informed that players are currently training on an individual basis.

Some players have elected to stay in Pittsburgh while others have returned home to where they grew up and where their families are.

Throughout each week, the team does virtual training sessions with our coaching staff and Head Athletic Trainer Bob Smith. So this goes into the typical day for our players and staff.

As for playing in a closed-door environment if the season were to restart in the coming months, the club would work with the USL’s guidance and parameters on this subject.

According to Thursday’s statements released by the Riverhounds and USL, the league remains in position to reschedule all matches affected by this suspension. Tickets to postponed Riverhounds SC home matches will be honored at each game’s respective rescheduled date.

In addition, the USL announced that its training moratorium will be extended through Friday, May 15. However, the USL is also exploring scenarios that would allow for players to return to training facilities to conduct individual or small group work prior to May 15. Any re-opening of club facilities will be done in accordance with local and state guidelines, and with all involved adhering to strict players social distancing protocols.

The club continues to monitor government decisions at the federal, state and local levels in regard to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). In addition, the organization has been in contact with the USL Championship and government officials during this decision-making process and will continue to cooperate with these parties in regard to recommendations moving forward.

The safety and well-being of players, coaches, employees and fans are Riverhounds SC’s first priority.

Additional information on COVID-19 can be found at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. For additional updates, please monitor riverhounds.com and team social media channels at @RiverhoundsSC.

Look for more in the coming days from Pittsburgh Soccer Now’s Mark Goodman, who will provide more on how COVID-19 may potentially impact the status and standing of USL Championship clubs. 

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets including Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the United States. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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