Fresno-Burlingame on Friday is league’s Game of the Week; 11 weekend matches on docket

TAMPA, Fla. – The 2016 PDL season begins on Friday as 11 matchups are set for the upcoming weekend. The new campaign begins Friday night as Fresno Fuego hosts Burlingame Dragons FC (10:30 p.m. ET) for the PDL Game of the Week, live on’s Match Center.

The league features 67 teams within four conferences and 10 divisions throughout the United States and Canada. Eleven of the PDL’s current members are owned and operated by a United Soccer League or Major Soccer League club.

2016 PDL Division Breakdown and Previews:
Central Conference: Great Lakes Division | Heartland Division
Eastern Conference: Mid Atlantic Division | Northeast Division | South Atlantic Division
Southern Conference: Mid South Division | Southeast Division
Western Conference: Central Pacific Division | Northwest Division | Southwest Division

Canadian side K-W United FC will prepare its title defense this month after winning the 2015 PDL Championship with a 4-3 victory against the New York Red Bulls II on Aug. 2 at Starfire Stadium in Tukwila, Wash. K-W opens its schedule on May 17 at TFC Academy in Toronto.

Scouting the future:
The USL Scouting Network enters its second year of operation this summer, with more than 20 professional scouts throughout the United States and Canada utilized to compile a detailed database of players who have the potential to play at the next level. (PDL Top Prospects)

Alumni by the numbers:
The number of alumni in professional leagues continues to grow with the PDL’s success. More than 325 alumni are currently competing in the United Soccer League and more than 200 alumni in Major League Soccer. During the 2016 MLS SuperDraft, a total of 50 alumni were selected. In total, more than 700 former PDL players are currently playing professional soccer in North America.PDL attendance milestone:
The 2016 PDL season will witness an impressive attendance total as the number will eclipse four million fans this year since figures have been recorded starting in 1998. The attendance figure currently is at 3,923,429 heading into the new season.The PDL’s roots trace back to 1995 as the league gears up for its 22nd season. The league is the proven professional pathway for amateur players in the United States and Canada, but additionally a number of well-known international players have come up through the ranks, including former Germany striker and current U.S. Men’s National Team Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann. Current U.S. National Team players such as Geoff Cameron, Brad Guzan, DeAndre Yedlin and Gyasi Zardes also make up a continually growing list with PDL ties.

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The proven developmental leader in North American soccer’s evolving tiered structure, the 2016 PDL season features 67 teams within four conferences throughout the United States and Canada. Eleven of the PDL’s current members are owned and operated by a Major League Soccer or United Soccer League club. The PDL has proven to be an important stepping-stone for top professionals now playing throughout the world, with 70 percent of all MLS draftees having PDL experience. The PDL provides elite collegiate players the opportunity to taste a higher level of competition while maintaining their eligibility. In addition to league play, PDL teams compete in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as well as various exhibitions.

PDL PR – John Griffin / Nicholas Murray / Charlie Corr – Tampa, FL – 813.963.3909 – Twitter: @USLPDL