The National Professional Soccer League gave provisional approval to its 13th franchise yesterday, accepting the application of the Wichita Wings.
The applications of both Wichita and Cleveland, provisionally accepted on Wednesday, will undergo formal review for final approval within the next two weeks.
The Wings operated in the Major Soccer League from 1979 until it folded three weeks ago. It will have "community ownership," operate as the Wings and also will continue under the leadership of president Roy Turner, who is the team's coach.
The Wings join Baltimore and Cleveland as former MSL teams in the NPSL. St. Louis also will be represented, but it has no connection with the MSL. The NPSL Tulsa Ambush is moving to St. Louis.
The Baltimore Spirit, whose season ticket count has reached 580, continues to work on signing players. Yesterday, the team made contract offers to at least five players, including former Blast players Rusty Troy and Joe Koziol. Troy played with the Blast for five seasons and Koziol, a Loyola College graduate, played with the Blast last season.
The former MSL franchise in Dallas has told the NPSL it is not interested in membership, but conversations continue with San Diego. Sockers spokesman Tim Latta said San Diego is considering three options: the NPSL, the Continental Indoor Soccer League and starting a league of its own, with teams in Mexico and Canada.
As the NPSL continues to grow, two regionally balanced divisions are emerging. The American Division, in which the Spirit will play, includes Buffalo, N.Y.; Cleveland, Canton and Dayton in Ohio, Detroit and Harrisburg, Pa. The National Division lineup is Chicago, Kansas City, Mo., Milwaukee, St. Louis, Denver and Wichita.