Youth soccer league suing NFL following construction for Super Bowl 50

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ByDavid Louie KGO logo
Tuesday, January 5, 2016
Santa Clara youth soccer league suing NFL following construction
A youth soccer league has filed a lawsuit against the NFL and the city of Santa Clara to prevent them from converting their soccer fields into a media field for Super Bowl 50.

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KGO) -- A youth soccer league has filed a lawsuit against the National Football League and the city of Santa Clara.

That's because the NFL started construction Monday in the soccer fields across from Levi's Stadium as part of plans for Super Bowl 50.

The construction has angered the Santa Clara soccer community so much that soccer moms, dads and coaches are expected to take the NFL to court Tuesday morning.

Santa Clara officials said they are going to turn over the field to the NFL even though a court challenge by the youth soccer league is set for Wednesday. "The judge had made it clear that while there was no TRO in place, Temporary Restraining Order in place, that he would not be pleased if anything drastic occurred in the interim before the previously scheduled Wednesday afternoon hearing," soccer league attorney Gautam Dutta said.

The NFL told ABC7 News on Friday that no digging of the field would be done, but video taken on Monday contradicts that. The three soccer fields are to be used by a media village, security and event staging for the February 7 Super Bowl. "It sure does look like it that they think and the NFL may actually believe too, that they're above the judge's request and I think that's a very, very poor misstep on their part," youth soccer league board member Burt Field said.

The agreement between the city of Santa Clara and the NFL for the fields was signed only a couple of weeks ago, displacing an estimated 6,000 young soccer players.

In preparation for the conversion, about a dozen flatbed trucks arrived Monday, loaded with pallets of terraplast turf cover, which will be placed atop the soccer fields to protect them from the weight of equipment. "They've had loads come in out of Tennessee, Louisiana, several out of Chicago area, the ones I done out of Sycamore, Illinois," J.K. Hack Transportation Services spokesperson Carson Malone said.

The youth soccer league is now taking the NFL to court Tuesday morning to try to stop use of the field.

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