Letter Regarding Upcoming Changes to Youth Soccer

The United States Soccer Federation (U.S. Soccer) has announced major changes for youth soccer that will impact teams and soccer clubs throughout the United States, beginning in August 2016. In light of our upcoming registration (beginning March 1, 2016) and our 2016 travel player selection process (beginning March 2016), all appropriate steps must be in place now to prepare for these changes. We believe that a quick acclimation is in everyone 's best interest and we have taken steps to make these changes as smooth as possible for our players. 

Our goal is to make sure each child plays at a level that is best for him/her to thrive while, of course, complying with the new mandatory changes. This brief letter is intended to explain the changes and hopefully address anticipated questions and concerns. We want to educate our families and garner your support during this time of change. Please remember that this is a U.S. Soccer mandate and NOT an Upper Dublin Soccer Club mandate.

The two major changes:
1)     Birth year age groups (January 1st cutoff replacing the current August 1st cutoff)
2)     Small-sided games (fewer players on smaller fields for many of our younger groups}

Age groups will be based on birth-year (ex: all 2005 birthdays will be U12 age group next season)
http://www.epysa.org/membership/us _soccer_player_development_cups_competitions/

Fewer players on the field means more touches on the ball which translates to more individual skills and greater long term enjoyment;

U12 and under age groups will have fewer players on the field. Some ages will play on smaller fields.
http://www.epysa.orglmembership/us _soccer_player_development_smallsided_games/
http://www.epysa.org/membership/us_soccer_player_development_field_goal  _standards/

Will these changes impact REC and TRAVEL players?     YES - We are one Club
Will there be changes impacting the Travel Player Selection Process this Spring 2016?     YES
Will my child be able to tryout for more than one Travel age group and possibly "play up" into an "older" age group?     YES
http://www.epysa.org/membership/us _soccer_player_developmentJrequently_asked_questions/

The Club has put together a committee, comprised of Board Members, Coaches and Managers from different age groups (including Travel and Rec).  This committee will help our players, parents and coaches navigate through the U.S. Soccer mandated changes.  Our Club's commitment to maintaining a FUN and instructional soccer experience remains unchanged.

Please take some time to click the links and read more details on the coming changes. 

The recent announcement about safety measures regarding young players heading the soccer ball is not in the scope of this document and will be addressed by the Club as we roll out our spring programs.

Thank you for your support and see you on the fields!

Upper Dublin Soccer Club

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