Sacramento Republic Football Club is an American professional soccer team based in Sacramento, California that plays in the Western Conference of the USL Championship. Co-founded by Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner in 2012, the team started to play in 2014 at Hughes Stadium, a 20,231 seat stadium.
Sacramento Republic FC Youth Development System
Republic FC launched its Youth Academy in 2015, providing a professional training environment for top youth players to develop into professional players for our first team, other professional clubs, and elite college programs. In addition, our Academy has produced players who have represented their respective national team, both at the senior and youth levels.
Sacramento Republic FC Academy teams will participate in a newly formed competition created by Major League Soccer, providing year-round high-level matches for MLS club academy teams and non-MLS academy teams. This next-generation elite youth league will present more opportunities to support player growth with a direct connection to the top tier of American soccer.
Our experienced, professional staff continuously works to develop a culture around optimal character, continuous learning, and competition to help each individual be their best and positively contribute to the club. Our Academy players from across the region have unmatched access to a professional pathway and a club wide, fully integrated approach.
The club will continue to work in collaboration with local clubs and develop professional players who contribute to our first team winning championships.
What should I do if interested in playing for Republic FC’s Academy?
If you are interested in playing for Republic FC’s Academy, please complete the Academy Player Interest Form and contact Academy Director, Dennis Sanchez, [email protected].
Republic FC’s Academy will host an opportunity for elite youth soccer players to earn a spot in the region’s only youth development program competing in the country’s premier youth soccer platform, MLS NEXT.
Over two weekends, the Academy will host tryouts across four different age groups – U14, U15, U17, and U19 – for youth players aspiring to play at the college or professional level. The sessions will be held Republic FC’s Academy home fields, the Mather Sports Complex – 3755 Schriever Ave., Mather, CA 95655.
OPEN TRYOUT DATE INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND BY CLICKING HERE.
Our Talent Identification process allows us to identify and further evaluate players within our Academy who embody Sacramento Republic characteristics. Our focus is on correctly identifying players through empirically validated long-term talent predictors, creating an efficient recruitment process that works in collaboration with local clubs across our region, and developing a network of trustworthy relationships that provides opportunity for players of all backgrounds.
Our scouting network looks to identify players who can embody the following characteristics within our environment over time.
TALENT IDENTIFICATION PLATFORMS
We have several ways in which a player can be observed within their respective environment, allowing them to stay committed to their current club team. Once a player has been identified, we will work their club to find an opportunity to bring that player in for further evaluation. Players can be further observed through the following avenues:
- Within the player’s respective current club environment
- Through our Republic FC Academy Scouting Network
- Republic FC led Talent Identification Days, Centers of Excellence, and Club Festivals
- Other identification platforms (PDP, ODP, etc.)
Locally Sourced Players
Sacramento Republic FC takes immense pride in working together with local clubs to provide a professional pathway for elite players around our surrounding area. We want to recognize those clubs who lead in player development and help produce players with the ability to play within our Academy and professionally.
The list (click here) showcases players currently in our Academy and their most recent club.
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USL Pro announced on December 3, 2012, that a Sacramento expansion team would join the league for the 2014 season. “Preki” Radosavljevi was announced as the new team’s head coach on July 15, 2013. By popular vote, the team’s name and logo were chosen. The Sacramento Republic FC franchise was formally renamed on July 18, 2013, during the first Sacramento Soccer Day. More than 9,500 season tickets had been purchased by the team as of April 2015.
2014: First-year championship
After a sold-out crowd of 20,231, the Republic FC made their home debut against the Harrisburg City Islanders on April 26, 2014, losing 2–1 to Hughes Stadium. The previous USL regular season single-game attendance record of 10,697 was almost quadrupled by this statistic. It had a lesser crowd of 17,414 for the next match, a 2–1 victory over Orange County Blues FC. They eventually sold out all of their home games, but this one was the exception. Boney Field at the California Exposition Center, the new 8,000-seat soccer stadium for Republic FC, was officially opened on June 20, 2014 by the team. A 4-3 victory over the Colorado Rapids Reserves In the 84th minute, Mike Fucito snuck in a goal to seal the victory.
Previously, Orlando City SC’s regular season attendance record of 112,748 was broken by the team on July 27, 2014. Attendance at the event totaled 182,107. (158,107 regular season; 24,000 in the playoffs). With a 17-win, 4-tie, and 7-loss season, Republic FC finished second behind Orlando City SC. On their way to the Semifinals, they beat the Wilmington Hammerheads 4-1. Los Angeles Galaxy II were defeated 3–2 in the Semifinals by Rodrigo López, who scored a hat trick and the game-winning goal in stoppage time. Octavio Guzman and Thomas Stewart scored in the 2–0 victory over Harrisburg City Islanders in the USL Championship game. The MVP award went to López. Coach of the Year was Preki. As a result, Nemanja Vukovi has been named the year’s top defensive performer. All-League First Team honors went to López and Vukovi.
The Bonney Field capacity was increased during Republic FC’s second season. Sports franchises San Francisco 49ers and Sacramento Kings also invested in Sacramento Republic in January 2015, with hopes to expand the club into the MLS if it becomes an official franchise in the near future. Seattle Sounders FC 2 defeated Sacramento 4–2 in the first game of the season. Two years in a row, they made it to the fourth round of the US Open Cup by defeating Sonoma County Sol and Chula Vista FC 4–2 and 7–3 respectively.
Head coach Preki was replaced by Paul Buckle on July 7th, the Republic confirmed. A friendly against Sunderland was Buckle’s debut game with the Republic of Ireland, which Sacramento won 1–0. USL Western Conference champions Orange County Blues held Sacramento to a season-ending goalless draw. Second year in a row, the Republic qualified for the playoffs, falling 1–0 to LA Galaxy II in the first round. According to the Major League Soccer (MLS) announcement made on January 22, 2019, billionaire Ron Burkle, the primary investor in the Pittsburgh Penguins ice hockey team since 1999, would be the primary investor in the Sacramento Republic. Sources told CBS Sports on September 19, 2019, that Sacramento Republic FC would become the league’s 29th member club.
Reports that MLS was still in “advanced conversations” are erroneous, according to MLS. Sacramento Republic FC, which will begin play in 2022, was awarded an expansion franchise at a press conference on October 21st, 2019. As a result of delays in the pandemic in the United States, Sacramento Republic and MLS have announced that the team will play in 2023.
Colors and Badge
Republic FC’s colors are red, maple, and eggshell. The club’s crest is a classic shield that pays homage to the Bear Flag by incorporating some of its colors into the design. In addition to the California grizzly bear, which appears on the state flag and is the official state animal of the Golden State, the crest features a nautical star, which is a nod to the Bear Flag’s star and is the same color as it. Sacramento’s motto is “Urbs Indomita,” which translates to “Indomitable City” in Latin.
First-ever home and away kits were unveiled by the club on December 5, 2013. Italian sportswear company Lotto provided the team’s jersey through the 2016 season, with UC Davis Children’s Hospital as its shirt sponsor. The club’s “Old Glory Red” is the primary color of the home kit, while the away shirt is mostly white. On the left side of the wearer’s chest, the club crest was embroidered on both Lotto kits’ diagonal maroon stripes. Printed on the right sleeve was the club motto, “Urbs Indomita.” In honor of the previous season’s USL Championship, a star was placed over the crest of the third shirt, which was released before of the 2015 season and the US Open Cup.
After announcing a new collaboration with Nike on November 21, 2015, Republic FC presented new home and away jerseys for the 2016 USL season. The “Old Glory Red” home outfit has returned, while the “White and Gray” away kit has been updated. The diagonal stripe is omitted in favor of vertical patterns in both designs. The back neckline of the new garments is inscribed with the Latin phrase “Urbs Indomita.” One of the earliest corporate partners of Republic FC and the club’s uniform sponsor, UC Davis Children’s Hospital, renewed their sponsorship on July 22, 2016 for USL participation beyond 2016. And should Republic win an expansion bid, UC Davis Health Systems will become the league’s jersey sponsor.
Many fans travel from as far north as Redding to see matches for Republic FC, which has a significant following in Northern California. The Tower Bridge Battalion is the name of the club’s unaffiliated fan club. Because of its prominent location in downtown Sacramento and its link to West Sacramento, this band’s name is appropriately titled “Tower Bridge.” In the team’s home stadium, the Tower Bridge Battalion is located.
The Tower Bridge Battalion will use a variety of chants throughout the game. Large drums, megaphones, and other noisemakers are among the Battalion’s most common instruments. During the game, the crowd is coordinated by a team of coordinators. An important role has been played by the Tower Bridge Battalion in organizing Sacramento’s potential Major League Soccer expansion team’s supporter base. The Battalion led tens of thousands of people through downtown Sacramento on September 19, 2014, in an effort to demonstrate Major League Soccer officials how passionate the local soccer community is.
Papa Murphy’s Park
The Sacramento City College open, multi-purpose Hughes Stadium was originally slated to be the club’s home when it was first proposed. A soccer-specific stadium with 8,000 seats was announced for the grounds of Cal Expo on November 14, 2013, however, with Republic FC planning to play in it. Ovations Food Service, the company behind the proposed stadium, would own and fund it, and it was expected to be built in time for the start of the 2014 USL season if permitted.
After Hughes Stadium was unable to be built in time for the 2014 season’s start, the team played its first matches at Cal Expo’s new stadium in the interim. Following a naming rights sponsorship agreement with Bonney Plumbing, Heating, Air and Rooter Service, the new stadium was christened Bonney Field. The club’s first match at Bonney Field was against the Colorado Rapids Reserves on June 20, 2014, and the team won the match 4–3. Due to the smaller capacity of Bonney Stadium, the attendance was lower than usual for Hughes Stadium matchups, but still above average for USL Pro regular-season games.
Bonney Field began expanding its capacity in January 2015 with the start of construction work on a new wing. With the addition of seats along the north endline and east sideline, the stadium’s seating capacity grew to 11,442 for 2015. Bonney Field was renamed Papa Murphy Park in March 2017 when Papa Murphy’s Holdings, Inc. purchased the stadium’s naming rights for a fee.
Proposed railyards MLS stadium
The owners of Sacramento Republic FC have unveiled plans to build a 20,000-seat soccer-specific stadium in downtown Sacramento as part of their quest to join MLS as an expansion team. Announcing the hiring of HNTB Corp as the stadium’s primary architect in August 2015, Republic FC stated that the stadium will be built on the site of the Sacramento Railyards. Sutter Health Park in Sacramento and Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara were both designed by HNTB. After a public poll and a series of workshops, the new stadium’s concept design was announced on December 1, 2015.
The stadium will include separate stands on each side, a nod to old English stadia like St James’ Park, even though it has a closed-bowl design. There will be an untiered east side similar to that of the Yellow Wall at Westfalenstadion in Germany to satisfy the goal of generating MLS’s best home court advantage. It was on December 1st that the Sacramento City Council voted 8–0 to adopt an agreement that would allow construction of the 25,000-seat stadium to begin if the club was accepted into MLS. There are estimates that the stadium will cost $226 million, and it will be privately funded. Renderings of the proposed Sacramento Republic FC stadium were updated on April 2, 2019.
There were extra field-level seating spaces, a 360-degree concourse/pedestrian walkway, and new seats at canopy level on the west side of the stadium, which pushed the total cost to $252 million. After a successful bid, the team announced that they would likely begin building on the stadium immediately, expecting to have it completed by late 2021 or early 2022, in time for the MLS season in 2022, assuming they are successful. On October 21, 2019, the franchise was approved into the MLS, and construction should begin in the fall of 2020.