It's been awhile since fans from the DC to Boston corridor have been able to see the Eagles in person. Weather and travel related issues have meant that for the most part Eagles matches have been on the West Cost, Texas, or the Southeast in recent years. However, that is about to change according to U.S.A. Rugby CEO Dan Payne.
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It makes a lot of sense for the Eagles to be heading to D.C. United's new stadium. The biggest link is that one of the owners of D.C. United is Will Chang, the same guy that sits on the U.S.A. Rugby Board of Directors. That gives U.S.A. Rugby access to D.C. United's stadium just like it gives them access to AT&T Park in San Francisco for the 7s World Cup in 2018.
Surprisingly, finding the right size stadium for the right price has been difficult on the East Coast. PPL Park was used to host the Eagles vs. Maori All Blacks a few years ago but it's not the most centralized stadium for fans. D.C. United's stadium will be right in the heart of the District. Other stadiums like Red Bull Arena can either be too big or simply too expensive. Other venues, due to the weather, may not have the right kind of turf to host a match. It's one of the issues that plagued PRO Rugby in their search for a Northeast venue.
Having access to the new stadium in the District of Columbia is only going to be a benefit for the Eagles. The D.C.-Maryland-Virginia area has a strong rugby scene and also a large international presence making it appealing for many reasons. The only downside is that the stadium doesn't open until next year.