Sky Blue FC will play its Aug. 18 match against Reign FC at Red Bull Arena, the club announced Monday.
The occasion will be the first National Women’s Soccer League home match the New Jersey-based club has played outside of Yurcak Field. It is also the first time Red Bull Arena, home of Major League Soccer’s New York Red Bulls, will host an NWSL match. The Harrison, N.J., stadium has hosted the United States women’s national team multiple times.
“This is a big moment for our club, our players and fans,” Sky Blue interim general manager Alyse LaHue said in a statement released by the club.
LaHue previously expressed interest in playing Sky Blue matches at Red Bull Arena, entertaining the idea of a doubleheader. This match will be a standalone event. The idea to play against the Reign at Red Bull Arena became public last week, when Sky Blue polled fans on Twitter about the venue change.
“We asked our fans if they would support this idea and they very definitively said yes,” LaHue added. “We’re always listening to and looking for ideas that enhance the fan experience as we push this club forward.”
Red Bulls general manager Marc de Grandpre said in the same statement, “We are very pleased to welcome Sky Blue to Red Bull Arena, and to have this match come together after months of planning. Our organization strives to support and grow the game locally, and hosting an NWSL match at Red Bull Arena is a great opportunity to support Sky Blue and celebrate the local soccer community.”
Sky Blue previously announced the match against the Reign as its second sellout of the season, but the team is now swapping the 5,000-seater Yurcak Field for a 25,000-seat location.
Red Bull Arena is a little more than 30 miles to the north of Yurcak Field, which is in Piscataway, putting it closer to New York City. Red Bull Arena also enjoys public transportation courtesy of the PATH, a convenience for many who have expressed difficulty reaching Yurcak Field without a car.
Sky Blue next plays the Utah Royals on the road on Aug. 7 and then hosts the Chicago Red Stars Aug. 14 before the Red Bull Arena match.