By Michael Lewis

FrontRowSoccer.com Editor

In a stunning development, California United Strikers FC has decided to withdraw from the National Premier Soccer League and the NPSL Founders Cup.

The team’s decision to drop out was a blow to both competitions, especially the Founders Cup, which has dropped from 11 to 10 teams.

The Founders Cup is scheduled to start in August.

In a tweet, the club announced:

“To clarify a previous tweet:

“California United Strikers FC has withdrawn from NPSL & Founders Cup.  Our Club remains growing and strong!  We wish NPSL the best of luck moving forward as we pursue all professional league options for our Club.”

Strikers FC withdrawal left the Founders Cup Western Division with four clubs — ASC San Diego, Cal FC, FC Arizona and Oakland Roots. The division is scheduled to begin Aug. 24.

The East Region clubs will include Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, Miami FC, Miami United FC, Milwaukee Torrent and Cosmos. That division will begin Aug. 10.

There was no immediate comment by the NPSL.

Hicksville, N.Y. native Michael Collins is the president of Strikers FC and a co-founder of the team with Pete and Bronwyn Capriotti.

Collins, the son of former Long Island Junior Soccer League president Peter Collin, enjoyed an 18-year pro soccer career. His playing time included stints with New York United (American Soccer League) and New York Nationals (United Soccer League), the New York Arrows, New York Express, Baltimore Blast, Los Angeles Lazers and San Diego Sockers (all Major Indoor Soccer League), among other indoor teams

The club intended to join the North American Soccer League as an expansion team in 2018, but the league went into dormancy early that year.