Minnesota United announced that Allina Health will become the Official Health Care Provider of MNUFC. This expanded partnership allows the two organizations to make a larger impact in their shared commitment to serving our community.
Manny Lagos, MNUFC Chief Soccer Officer, and Robby Bershow, MD, Allina Health sports medicine physician and Chief Medical Officer of MNUFC, will be available for interviews at Allianz Field between 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. today.
“We have been extraordinarily fortunate to have Allina Health as a partner since our inaugural MLS season in 2017. Not only have they provided excellent medical care for our players, but we have been continually impressed with, and inspired by, the depth of their commitment to our community,” said Minnesota United CEO Shari Ballard. “Having Allina Health as a partner makes our Club better and allows us to continue to deepen our community impact in many areas. One example that has touched us deeply is our Power Soccer Team. We are so proud to be associated with the incredible athletes on the team, and with all of the amazing team members throughout the Allina Health organization. We are excited to continue our work together and to have an even greater impact across the communities we serve.”
As the Official Health Care Provider of Minnesota United, Allina Health will represent the club in the following areas:
- Official Team Physicians of Minnesota United
- Presenting Partner of MNUFC Power Soccer
- Presenting Partner of annual blood drives at Allianz Field
- SAVE THE DATE: March 21 at Allianz Field, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. CT.
- Fans can register here.
- Presenting Partner of the MNUFC Academy
- Presenting Partner of the Sound of the Loons podcast
- The official Jersey Front Partner for MNUFC2
- Allina Health gate at the SE entry of Allianz Field
“I feel fortunate to be part of two great teams – Allina Health and Minnesota United – and I am grateful these two community-focused organizations are strengthening their partnership,” said Robby Bershow, MD, Allina Health sports medicine physician and Chief Medical Officer of MNUFC. “Through top-quality care of MNUFC players, youth soccer opportunities, blood drives, the power soccer team, podcasts and more, this partnership allows us to be all together better for the players, fans, patients and communities we serve.”
MNUFC Power Soccer:
Minnesota United signed athletes with Allina Health Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute’s existing power soccer team in the fall of 2022. The Courage Kenny Blizzards became ‘MNUFC Power Soccer,’ kicking off the club’s first power soccer team and only the third power soccer team in MLS. Power soccer is the first competitive team sport designed and developed specifically for power wheelchair users. Power soccer Athletes' disabilities include quadriplegia, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, among others. Athletes do not have to be everyday wheelchair users to play the sport of power soccer. The game is usually played in a gymnasium on a regulation basketball court. Two teams of four players attack, defend, and spin-kick a 13-inch soccer ball in a skilled and challenging game similar to able-bodied soccer.
The team will continue to compete in the U.S. Power Soccer Association (USPSA) under the Minnesota United name. MNUFC Power Soccer trains in Golden Valley, Minn. at the Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute, led by Coach Katie Kensy and volunteer coaches Tom Gordon, Brian Monson, and Piper Murray.
Blood Drive at Allianz Field:
MNUFC will continue to host annual blood drives at Allianz Field, presented by Allina Health.
This year’s blood drive will be held on March 21 at Allianz Field, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. CT. Fans can register here.
The club and Allina Health first collaborated on this initiative in 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, hosting four blood drives that year that resulted in more than 300 units of blood donated and nearly 1,000 lives saved.
Starting in 2023, Allina Health will be the Presenting Partner and Jersey Front Partner of the MNUFC Academy. With teams at the U15, U17 and U19 level, the MNUFC Academy is the first step of Minnesota United’s Pro Player Pathway – a path for players to move from youth soccer to the Academy, MNUFC2, and the First Team. As part of the partnership, Allina Health will provide curriculum and support sessions to the Academy teams through Allina Health’s ‘Change to Chill’ program – mindfulness and stress relief resources for teenagers.
“We’re thrilled to expand our partnership with Allina Health,” said MNUFC Vice President of Youth Development Amos Magee. “The willingness they have to work with us on health and wellness – from our Academy and youth soccer spaces, through the club’s second team, all the way up to our first team – we know that Allina Health will be continually working with us to provide all of our soccer players the best path forward to compete day-in and day-out, both on and off of the field.”
Allina Health Honorary Scoreboard Keeper:
Keeping with the long-held Allianz Field tradition of select fans changing the score cards on the north end of the stadium at MNUFC home games, the club and Allina Health will continue to recognize an Allina Health healthcare worker or team member with the honor. The Honorary Scoreboard Keeper will be recognized during each game with a live in-stadium appearance on the video board as well as an in-stadium PA read. The Honorary Scoreboard Keeper for the Loons home opener on March 11 will be Deandra Bardell, captain of the MNUFC Power Soccer team.
Sound of the Loons:
Allina Health will continue their support of the Sound of the Loons podcast as the Presenting Partner. Fans can expect to hear an Allina Health physician or psychiatrist as a podcast guest each season.
In continued support of the Pro Player Pathway, Allina Health will be the Jersey Front Partner of MNUFC2, Minnesota United’s MLS NEXT Pro team.
Allina Health Entry:
The SE entry at Allianz Field will now be the Allina Health Gate. Additional signage will live throughout the stadium.
About Minnesota United:
Professional soccer has been a part of Minnesota for over four decades and Minnesota United is at the forefront of growing the game at all levels. From the first team to the front office to the Development Academy to our work throughout the Twin Cities, the club’s goal remains the same: to promote soccer, the world’s game, and through it inspire and unite our community. We’ll accomplish this through a culture built on accountability, respect, excellence and honesty and by creating a fan experience and connection to the community second to none. In 2023, MNUFC returns to the pitch for its seventh season in MLS. Follow Minnesota United’s social channels and check our website at mnufc.com for regular updates on the club.
About Allina Health:
Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 12 hospital campuses, 15 retail pharmacies, and many specialty care centers and specialty medical services, home care, and emergency medical transportation services.