Chicago’s newest professional soccer team made headlines this past week with a solidarity payment to semi-pro club Steel City FC out of Joliet. The payment stems from the recent signing of midfielder Damon Almazon.
“I believe this may be the first solidarity payment from a pro club to an amateur club in American soccer history,” Chicago House AC Managing Partner, President & CEO Peter Wilt said. “The payment is a just reward for their role in developing Damon.”
Many across the lower league universe praised Chicago House for the payment, saying that other professional clubs all the way up to MLS should take note.
The Gulf Coast Premier League and NISA have a solidarity payment deal in place, which allows GCPL clubs to ask for $500 plus 10% of the contract value for any player signed by a NISA team. If the deal with Steel City FC is anywhere near that range, the Midwest Premier League club should receive over $2,000 in payment from Chicago House.
“On behalf of Steel City FC and the Midwest Premier League, I am very excited to see the recent signing of Damon Almazan by Chicago House Athletic Club,” says MWPL Commissioner, Andy Hayes. “The clubs have worked together within the broader NISA affiliation framework and I couldn’t be happier to see this type of collaboration and partnership. The resulting solidarity payment reinforces NISA and its clubs’ commitment to developing talent and a proper player pipeline to grow the game organically.”