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Phantoms move to PDL division of the USL for 2008 season
HAMPSTEAD, NH – (November 14, 2007) – The New Hampshire Phantoms in their 13th year—the longest running minor league franchise in New Hampshire, announce they will move to the Premier Development League of the USL for the 2008 season. The top U23 men’s amateur league in North America lives in the USL Premier Development League (PDL), the development ground for elite players. The 2008 campaign features a 63-team format within four conferences, consisting of 16 regular season matches, 8 home and 8 away. The schedule is augmented by participation in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, and various exhibitions. Players have the ability to compete in the PDL throughout the summer months in a professionalized setting while maintaining their collegiate eligibility. The league is the proving ground for players that aspire to reach the highest-levels of the game, while providing affordable family entertainment. The PDL league allows teams to bolster their rosters with up to eight players above the age of 23, all other roster spots must be held by players under the age of 23.
The PDL offers the NH Phantoms an opportunity to add younger players and build a stronger base for a return to Division II in the upcoming seasons. Moving to the PDL allows the Phantoms to offer a greater range of opportunities for recent college graduates and high school players without the means to play college soccer. The move also allows the NH Phantoms the opportunity to revisit some long-standing rivalries in the Northeast Division, including Cape Cod, Vermont, and Rhode Island.
Tryouts for the NH Phantoms PDL team will be announced 11/20/07.