A fascinating new soccer documentary about the defunct United Soccer Association and its top team, Los Angeles Wolves, is coming out soon. The United Soccer Association is the first internationally recognized soccer league in the United States.

Predating Major League Soccer by three decades, the United Soccer Association (USA) formed in 1966. With other rival professional leagues set to start, USA execs rushed to begin the league as soon as possible. Interestingly enough, the USA did not have any players of their own. As a result, officials invited entire foreign teams to feature in the league.

Current Premier League side Wolverhampton Wanderers helped compile one of the clubs for the USA. The team was the Los Angeles Wolves. It played at the historic Coliseum stadium. Wolves eventually won the USA title during the 1967 season, the league’s sole campaign. After the lone season, the USA combined forces with the NPSL and NASL.

Former LA Wolves player interview sparked idea for documentary

The upcoming documentary, 1967: When Wolves Conquered the USA, came about following a separate interview with a former player. Current Wolves execs learned of the L.A. club as Phil Parkes retold the team’s story. Parkes was the goalkeeper for the American Wolves team and eventually made over 300 appearances for the English club.

“The idea of the documentary came about following an interview Phil Parkes did for Wolves Radio,” stated Russell Jones, a marketing manager at Wolves. “He talked about being part of a Wolves team that represented L.A. in 1967, and as Phil started to retell his experiences of the trip, it soon became evident how significant this was. Upon further research, we established that this was the very first professional soccer league, and we were eventually crowned champions.”

“That tournament was the origins of what we see in U.S. soccer today, so for Wolverhampton Wanderers to have played such an integral part was incredibly exciting.”

Doc also tells off-pitch story of young English group in LA

The documentary is not, however, solely about what happened on the pitch. Along with game highlights, the movie also shows how the players adapted to the Los Angeles lifestyle as well. Many of the Wolves players had never even left England before the trip. In all, the players were able to spend nine weeks on the Hollywood scene to play in the newly formed league.

“Sadly, some of the former players have passed away, but those we have managed to interview were magic,” continued Jones. “It became clear very quickly that this wasn’t just about winning a trophy in 1967, it was also an amazing human-interest story.”

“They were young lads from Wolverhampton who were suddenly told they were going to fly to the other side of the world to swinging sixties L.A. and it was an incredible experience for them. When you hear them talk about it, their eyes light up because it just means that much to them even more than 50 years on.”

1967: When Wolves Conquered the USA releases to the general public in November. Wolves Studios, the club’s own production company, with help from Footballco. The media company recently acquired the popular soccer magazine MUNDIAL. Wolves will reveal how to watch the full documentary in the coming weeks.

PHOTO: IMAGO / Action Plus.