The Houston Dynamo Football Club will launch a second-division team in 2022 as part of Major League Soccer’s new MLS NEXT Pro league, MLS and the Club announced today.
The new team, Houston Dynamo 2, will be comprised of players from the Houston Dynamo Academy’s Under-17 and Under-19 sides, the Houston Dynamo FC first team and promising young players signed from college, other American professional leagues and internationally.
Established in June by Major League Soccer, the new 21-team professional league will complete an integrated player pathway from MLS NEXT through to MLS first teams. The new league will offer young players and experienced professionals the opportunity to develop and showcase their talents while competing for an MLS NEXT Pro championship.
MLS NEXT Pro will kick off its inaugural season in March, just one month after Major League Soccer action starts, and see its season culminate in postseason action in September. The full 2022 match schedule and competition details will be announced at a later date.
“Houston Dynamo 2 represents the completion of the Academy to Professional pipeline and puts the MLS system on par with some of the best leagues in the world,” Houston Dynamo General Manager Pat Onstad said. “This team will provide opportunities for young and promising players such as Juan Castilla, Nico Lemoine, Daniel Rios, Ian Hoffman, and Marcelo Palomino to get regular playing time against high-level competition on a weekly basis, which is paramount to their development.”
Fans can follow Houston Dynamo 2, or Dynamo Dos, on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok @HoustonDynamo2. Team news, including the roster and coaching staff as well as match previews, recaps and more, will be available online atHoustonDynamoFC.com/Dynamo2.
The inaugural season of MLS NEXT Pro will feature 20 MLS-affiliated squads and one independent team. Eight additional sides will be added before the 2023 season.
The league has appointed Charles Altchek, former MLS Senior Vice President of League Growth and Operations, as league President and former Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis as Senior Vice President of Competition and Operations.
“This is fantastic and important development for the club. The jump to the first team from the Academy is often a difficult one for a still developing player that is 17, 18, 19-years-old,” Houston Dynamo Academy Director Paul Holocher said. “Houston Dynamo 2 will help bridge the gap for future high potential players from within the Academy, or currently in college, to gain valuable playing experience, training and competing as a pro. It's exciting, as it gives the young players even more motivation to continue working towards their dream of playing for the first team."
Houston Dynamo365 and Houston Dash365 season ticket members will receive exclusive members-only pricing for tickets to Houston Dynamo 2 games.
Information regarding ticket pricing and availability, broadcast information, the venue or venues in which the team will play and the 2022 MLS NEXT Pro schedule, as well as the initial player roster and coaching staff, will be announced in the coming weeks.