The North Carolina Courage announced their 2017 kit sponsors on Monday. BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina, a health insurance company centered in Durham, N.C., will have their logo displayed on the front of the Courage’s jerseys, while Continental Tire, which has been an official sponsor of MLS since 2010, will be displayed on the back, beneath the jersey number.
The Courage made the announcement during a joint luncheon including North Carolina FC and season ticket holders. The meeting featured other information tidbits, including the news that NCFC owner Stephen Malik has been named to the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors. According to a tweet posted by the North Carolina Courage twitter account, Malik, who purchased the club in January, told those assembled that his goal for the club was “"Global domination... I'm not kidding."
In statements posted on the North Carolina Courage’s twitter page, North Carolina FC’s general manager Curt Johnson had his sights set similarly high: "It's incredible to kick off the season with a new women's team. We are incredibly proud and excited about that,” Johnson said. “There's been success in the launch, the brand is well received. We're going to push for a sellout for the opener."
The sponsor announcement follows the January release of their 2017 home and away kits and the recent affiliation with CASL and TFCA, as the Courage team look to lay down some local ties after changing ownership and relocating from Rochester, NY, earlier this year.
Fans will get their first glimpse of the Courage’s new kit sponsors when the team starts the season away to the Washington Spirit on April 15, 3 pm ET, in a rematch of the 2016 NWSL Championship. The Courage’s home opener against the Portland Thorns is scheduled for April 22 at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, NC.