BRISTOL, Tenn./Va. (WJHL) – Bristol will join the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) as an expansion team, the Bristol Rhythm AFC.
According to the NPSL, the new club will start playing in 2024. The Rhythm will represent both Bristol, Tennessee and Virginia.
“We are pleased and excited that Bristol Rhythm AFC has joined the NPSL,” NPSL Director of Membership Development Dina Case said in a release. “The Rhythm’s ownership group are seasoned business people with a passion for sport. The city of Bristol is unique in that it spans two states, and the Rhythm have done a great job in establishing strong support from the surrounding communities. We are confident they will be a successful addition to the league.”
According to the NPSL, home matches will be played at Gene Malcolm Stadium in Bristol, Virginia.
The NPSL identified Bristol, Tennessee resident, King College graduate and BTES administrator Diane Smith as the team’s general manager and owner.
Matt Smith, one of the owners of Mountain Empire Sports and Mountain Empire Capital, as the club’s president.
Andrew Rhoda was identified as the Rhythm’s sporting director. Rhoda is a South Africa native who moved to Bristol in 2017 to attend and play soccer at King University, where he received a bachelor’s in sports management and later received an MBA.