Nashville SC now has an idea of who the majority of their conference opponents might be for the upcoming 2018 USL season.
The league announced Friday which conferences the 33 teams will be placed in for this season and the foreseeable future.
Nashville SC is one of four new teams, along with ATL UTD 2, Indy Eleven, and North Carolina FC to join the Eastern Conference. Saint Louis FC has been moved to the Western Conference.
With Nashville SC heading to the Eastern Conference, it opens up a plethora of new rivalries that could spring up as the season progresses. Let’s take a look at some of them.
FC Cincinnati: The matches between these two moving forward have the potential to be the most combustable. There’s still some bitterness from some of the FC Cincinnati faithful that Nashville was chosen as a city for an MLS expansion before them. There’s no doubt that the Cincy fans bring lots of passion and excitment, plus it’s not a far trip to make for either club. We could even see this rivalry moving forward if Cincinnati is awarded an MLS bid as well.
ATL UTD 2: Nashville will get their first taste of the Atlanta fans in a couple of weeks, when the MLS side comes to visit for the Feb 10 exibition match. Like Cincinnati, this too is not a far travel for either club. In fact, this rivalry could mean more, as it’ll be a battle to determine who is the king of soccer in the south.
Louisville City FC: This will be Nashville SC’s shortest trip each year until Memphis arrives. Until then, the I-65 route to last year’s USL champions will certainly be one both support groups will make in droves.
Indy Eleven: Indianapolis will be making their USL debut as well, so they will also be out to prove that they can hang with soccer’s best each and every week. There’s already an existing rivalry between the two cities in the NFL for the Colts and Titans, so it shouldn’t be too hard to ignite a new one.