Premier Leagues Standards | Full release on usclubsoccer.org
CHARLESTON, S.C. (Feb. 12, 2013) – The Oregon Premier League is pleased to become part of US Club Soccer’s Premier Leagues platform, a network of leagues in local, statewide and similar geographic regions for competitive clubs and teams.
The Premier Leagues platform builds on the success of the National Premier Leagues (NPL) and the principle that league-based competition is the primary means for long-term player development and growth of the game.
"We've already been doing much of what this new platform offers since our inception," said Angela Harrison, OPL Director of Operations. "So as far as how are leagues are structured, there won't be much change. But the Council have evaluated and approved a few modifications in hopes of continuing to advance the development of the game in our state."
An initial group of eight leagues from across the country have been designated as part of the Premier Leagues platform:
- Alliance Premier Soccer League (Ohio and Pa.)
- Indiana Champions League (Ind.)
- Major Island Soccer Organization (Hawaii)
- New York Club Soccer League* (N.Y.)
- NorCal Premier League* (Calif.)
- Northern Illinois Soccer League* (Ill.)
- Oregon Premier League* (Ore.)
- Washington State Premier League* (Wash.)
* The second division of these leagues is part of the Premier Leagues platform, while the top division is part of the NPL platform. This integrated structure allows for movement between divisions within these leagues.
Premier Leagues are created with similar philosophies as the NPL, as well as the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy and Elite Clubs National League (ECNL), but with unique structures for participating clubs and teams.
While US Club Soccer’s emphasis on club development led to a club-based structure for the NPL, one of the differentiating factors in the Premier Leagues platform is the allowance for more team-based competition due to the smaller geographic region that each league covers (for example, no overnight stays are necessary). In areas with existing NPLs, the new Premier Leagues platform will extend opportunities to more clubs.
In addition to competing for league championships, qualifiers from each Premier League will meet for a Regional Premier Leagues Championship in future years, eventually culminating in a Premier Leagues national championship event. Qualification paths will be based on the number of leagues, regional travel logistics and calendar considerations.
“The creation of the Premier Leagues platform represents US Club Soccer’s continued drive to innovate and create better league-based competitive platforms, bringing those development formats to more clubs,” said US Club Soccer Executive Director Bill Sage. “Club development is the most important factor in the growth of the sport and the Premier Leagues provide an avenue for more clubs to become involved in US Club Soccer competition, player identification, education and development initiatives.”
Among the benefits to Premier Leagues will be integration into US Club Soccer’s id2 Program and Player Development Programs, to allow opportunity for selected players to participate in these Olympic Development Program-sanctioned programs.
In selected markets, Premier Leagues may also operate a state cup on behalf of US Club Soccer. Many US Club Soccer state cups will be qualifiers for the National Cup Finals. Teams in the Premier Leagues may receive “mid-stage” entry into state cup competitions in which they participate based on their Premier League competition results.
The full spectrum of US Club Soccer’s youth league-based programming includes:
· Premier Leagues
· Competitive Leagues / Sanctioned Leagues
· Rec / Super Rec Programs
For additional information on the Premier Leagues platform, contact our West Region rep, Gabe Rood.
A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer is an organization committed to the development and support of soccer clubs in the United States.
US Club Soccer offers youth and adult registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms at the recreational and competitive levels, as well as a variety of other programming, including the Olympic Development Program-sanctioned id2 Program and Player Development Programs.
Through US Club Soccer, all of a club’s programs – recreational, competitive and adult – are able to be united under one organizational umbrella, creating a “members for life” culture within each club.
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