NISA, the National Independent Soccer Association, was founded in 2017 and began play in 2019.

Founded under the ideals of the open soccer philosophy, the league has hit several stumbling blocks in its early years. Co-founder Jack Cummins passed away in 2018, and later that year co-founder Peter Wilt left the effort to start up Forward Madison FC.

The league initially began play with a Fall-Spring format, but the long winter break effectively made it not much different from the standard American Spring-Fall calendar. In addition, player contracts working on a different timeframe from domestic soccer proved difficult. As such, they have since moved in line with other domestic leagues, operating from the Spring to Fall.

At first, there were some big names in American soccer in NISA’s ranks. Clubs like the New York Cosmos, Detroit City FC, Chattanooga FC, Oakland Roots and Miami FC gave the league a solid initial foundation.

However, in just four short years, NISA has already lost ten clubs, either to other leagues or from folding outright. But despite the turnover, the league soldiers on.

The 2023 season will feature nine clubs, the standout being Chattanooga. Savannah Clovers, a solid amateur side has made the jump up to the pro ranks which should be a fun addition to the league. In an unusual situation, Flower City Union (Rochester) and Syracuse Pulse have merged for 2023. They will play home games in Rochester as Flower City, and when in Syracuse will be known as “Salt City Union”, listed in the standings table as “City Union”. According to the league, the Cosmos and California United Strikers FC officially are on hiatus, but it remains to be seen if they will ever return.

NISA TV schedule

The NISA league schedule for 2023 will stream games on Eleven Sports.

  • Friday, March 31

    • 10:00 PM ET

      Los Angeles Force vs. Club de Lyon FC (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
  • Saturday, April 01

    • 03:00 PM ET

      Chattanooga FC vs. Gold Star FC Detroit (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
    • 07:00 PM ET

      Maryland Bobcats FC vs. City Union (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
  • Saturday, April 08

    • 07:00 PM ET

      Savannah Clovers FC vs. Gold Star FC Detroit (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
  • Sunday, April 09

    • 07:00 PM ET

      Albion San Diego vs. Michigan Stars FC (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
  • Friday, April 14

    • 07:00 PM ET

      Michigan Stars FC vs. Gold Star FC Detroit (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports
  • Sunday, April 16

    • 07:00 PM ET

      Albion San Diego vs. Chattanooga FC (NISA)

      • Eleven Sports
      • Eleven Sports