Hello Coaches and Managers –
On behalf of the PSPL Soccer Board of Directors, we are pleased to welcome you to the PSPL and US Club Soccer. Our goal is to provide your players, team and club an exciting season of soccer.
PSPL is sanctioned by US Club Soccer. This is an organization created by and for competitive soccer clubs. US Club Soccer provides our insurance, our player passes and they provide a Player Identification Program for US National Teams as well as for college and professional teams.
US Club Soccer is our organization. Each US Club Soccer sanctioned club has one vote for the US Club Soccer Board of Directors. The US Club Soccer Board of Directors is made up of club representatives from around the country - each of whom must have at least a USSF B license.
Our partnership with US Club Soccer is beneficial because it allows our league and your club to operate flexibly, with player development as our focus. We strongly encourage you to use the flexibility offered by US Club Soccer Passes as a tool for your player’s development. We believe, when possible, you should use younger players from within your club when an older team needs players – rather than signing players from another club. We believe, when possible, you should use second team players with your first team, rather than signing players from another club. This is a common practice throughout the world and will help build club loyalty.
Another benefit is that you can sign player(s) to play for a season and he/she can experience what it is like to be on your team and in your Club.
We have created a Manager Handbook to provide assistance to clubs, coaches and managers as well as to ensure the Puget Sound Premier League operates smoothly and is a positive experience. There is a lot of information that will answer many of your questions. Please take the time to read it. We will be continually updating the handbook on-line. If you cannot find the answers to your questions in the handbook please feel free to e-mail email@example.com.
We wish you the best of luck!
Sincerely, The Puget Sound Premier League Board of Directors
2012 Fall PSPL Season
Updated August 2012
All Clubs are expected to know, educate and ultimately accept responsibility for all new coaches and managers who they allow to coach or manage a team in their Club. Puget Sound Premier League cannot allow Clubs to stay in our League if they cannot control their teams. The same standard that exists for clubs also exists for independent teams that are accepted into the league. All clubs and teams must meet the following requirements and agree to follow PSPL Rules and Directives.
A. Quality – Clubs and their teams must be committed to striving for excellence as concerns play, sportsmanship, fields, referee’s and the total soccer experience.
B. Director of Coaching - Clubs must designate a named Director of Coaching listed on the Puget Sound Premier League website in our Club Directory. The Director must be willing to stay informed of team’s involvement in the Puget Sound Premier League Soccer Programs.
C. Fields - Clubs must have at least one high quality field (5 time slots) per eight teams. Teams traveling long distances deserve to play on decent fields! Newer clubs or those that have had difficulty providing decent fields must submit proof of fields before their acceptance in the league. Teams may ask that they play all away games.
D. Referees - Clubs must have enough licensed referees available to cover their teams entered in competition. Newer clubs or those who have had difficulty providing licensed referees must submit proof of fields before their acceptance to the league.
E. Administrator - Clubs must have a Puget Sound Premier League Administrator responsible for helping teams maintain their club and team information, including contact information, on the Puget Sound Premier League web site. Newer clubs or those who have had difficulty with their organization must provide an administrator with working contact information and attend a pre-season meeting before their acceptance to the league.
F. Good Standing - Clubs must be in good standing with Puget Sound Premier League.
G. Independent Teams: The PSPL primarily creates competitive soccer leagues to promote club-based soccer teams. The PSPL believes clubs are more committed and more capable of developing young soccer players over the long term. However, the PSPL welcomes independent teams on a case-by-case basis. Independent teams will agree to eventually join or create a club to remain in the league over the long term. They will agree to follow the rules and standards according to US Club Soccer and the PSPL, before the competition committee approves the application. For more information on the application process for independent teams, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
H. Zero Tolerance: In past seasons, a few clubs and coaches have been expelled from future PSPL competitions and others have been placed on probation. The PSPL will be enforcing a “zero tolerance” for players, coaches, and parents who violate FIFA Law 12, or who behave in a manner that causes unacceptable and questionable actions that violate the spirit of fair play. Clubs need to realize that the “purposeful” use of an “illegal player” – either not registered or too old – puts the league, the team manager and its coaches at risk – both for liability and secondary medical insurance coverage. Furthermore, this type of “purposeful” action is a “breach of faith and honor” against all of the PSPL teams.
II. PUGET SOUND PREMIER LEAGUE STANDARDS:
A. The Puget Sound Premier League believes fundamentally in open competition and promotion/relegation.
B. The PSPL places teams with similar abilities into the same divisions, but once placed in a division, competition rules. Any team can advance to the Washington State Premier League as long as it continues to win and meet the league’s standards and criteria. The PSPL divisions are as follows:
- The Washington State Premier League (WSPL): This is our premier-level division. Teams must meet certain league standards in addition to advancing to the top echelon through competition. Two teams go down and two go up. Automatic Relegation to the Classic League will be for the lowest placed team; the second lowest-placed team will face off against the 2nd place finisher in the Classic League. Winner plays in WSPL. The champion of the WSPL qualifies for the National Premier League tournament sponsored by US Club Soccer.
- CLASSIC LEAGUE: This is for B-level select teams and strong C-level teams. League winner is automatically promoted to WSPL the 2nd-place team will compete against the 2nd-lowest team in the WSPL in a one-match playoff. Relegation from the Classic League will include the lowest placed team and the 2nd lowest placed team will play off against the 2nd placed team in the Copa League.
- PUGET SOUND COPA LEAGUE: District select and Rec-Select teams will find a comfortable home here in Copa land. There is no travel to the eastern side of the state. This is our entry-level league and may be structured in multiple ways. Automatic promotion to the Classic League will be awarded to the 1st place team; the 2nd place team will playoff against the 2nd lowest placed team in the Classic League. Promotion also will depend on teams and clubs meeting other league standards and criteria.
- INLAND NORTHWEST COPA LEAGUE: This is a league for district and rec-select teams from Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho that want to play on the east side of the mountains. The PSPL administers and helps to set their rules and standards of this league with a seven-member Eastern Washington advisory committee. The President, or executive director, shall appoint committee members.
- DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE: This is where it all begins. We offer U8-U10 development league for competitive teams at Starfire for Fall and Spring seasons. Teams play 8 v 8 at U8/U9 and 9 v 9 at U10. The games are played at Starfire’s smaller size turf fields next to the Sounders training facility. Divisions are created by ability levels and scores, while kept, are downplayed. This league is about focusing on developing players and developing referees. League provides the fields and the refs.
III. ESSENTIAL RULES
A. PLAYING UP: Teams wishing to play-up must be champions of the WSPL at-age and will only be allowed to enter the age above at the Classic level. This will be subject to approval from the PSPL Technical director and space in the league.
B. NUMBER OF TEAMS: The number of teams per division is determined by the quality of competition. The aim is to match like-minded teams together in an effort to promote one of the key tenants of player development. It is the goal to ultimately keep the Super League to 7 teams in a 12-game fall league schedule so teams will play each other twice in a home/away series.
C. ROSTERS: All teams may have 26 players listed on their US Club Master Roster. U-8 to U-11 teams may list up to 14 players on the game day roster. U-12 to U-19 teams may list up to 18 players on the game day roster.
D. PROMOTION/RELEGATION: We believe competition determines the pecking order. We believe that if you are good enough, you should be allowed to compete. That is the foundations of this league but we recognize extraordinary circumstances. The competition committee has the power to consider extraordinary issues, such as placing younger capable teams into older divisions. Fall-league results determine promotion/relegation for the following fall season and are used as a reference for team placement in the Spring League.
Entrance into the PSPL’s top league upon clubs committing to meet certain standards over time. These stricter standards do not apply to Classic and Copa leagues. They include:
- Affiliation with a recognized club.
- Clubs must have a Coaching Director with a minimum “C” License, or equivalent, or be committed to earning a "C" License over the 24- months after joining the league.
- Club must be composed of a minimum of three teams, or receive approval from the Competition Committee.
- Club must produce a recognized player development plan and/or demonstrate a track record of quality player development and/or a history of competitive excellence.
- Clubs must meet minimum field expectations. Super League matches must be played on quality turf or grass fields. Home team must provide a full crew of officials including a USSF certified Referee and 2 Assistant Referees.
- All of these factors will be considered when evaluating teams that want to play in the WSPL.
NORTHWEST CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Winners of Fall Washington State Premier League automatically advance to NWCL.
F. COMPETITION COMMITTEE:
This committee determines league placement, league standards and the laws of the game for the various leagues. The committee consists of 8 representatives, including the league technical director, or proxy, who heads the committee. Four representatives of PSPL clubs, which have a minimum one-year history with the club, are eligible to seek appointment to the committee. The president, or executive director, shall appoint committee members.
IV. FINANCIAL POLICIES
A. Refund Policy:
i. For teams that register and pullout prior to the initial deadline a refund less a $35.00 administrative fee will be granted.
ii. For teams that cancel their registration after the initial deadline but before the scheduling process has begun will receive a refund less a $75.00 administrative fee.
iii. For teams that cancel their registration after the scheduling process has begun, no refunds will be issued.
iv. For teams that cancel their registration after the schedule is posted no refund will be issued and a $400 fee will be assessed to the team/club.
B. Returned Checks: A $30.00 fee will be assessed for any returned checks.
C. Late payments: At the time of registration the team is committing to the full amount of the registration fee. The PSPL grants a 10-day window for teams to make the full payment of the registration fee.
i. PSPL reserves the right to charge a $25.00 late fee to the registrant for any payments received after 10 days.
ii. For any payment that is over 30 days late the PSPL may add a 5% late charge in addition to the $25.00 late fee.
iii. Teams may forfeit their spot in the league if the registration fee is not paid by the first game and the team is still liable for the full amount of the registration fee plus any late penalties.
V. TEAM RESPONSIBILITIES
i. The home team is responsible for obtaining fields and referees for their home games on the date specified by the league.
ii. For the fall PSPL league U-11 to U-14 games are scheduled on Saturdays and U-15 to U-19 games are played on Sundays. Home teams may change their games to a different day as long as it does not effect double header games and the other team agrees to the change.
iii. If a given date does not work for the teams involved than it is the responsibility of the team managers and coaches to work together to reschedule the game to a mutually agreeable date. In the event that an agreement cannot be made, the league office may impose penatlies against both teams up to and including fines and/or sanctions for future participation in the PSPL leagues.
iv. All games must be completed by the end of the season, or within one week of the season ending.
v. It is the home team’s responsibility to post their scheduled fields and times as soon as possible, but no later than 72 hours before the game. This is done by logging in to their team page and providing the field and game time. Once the date, time, and location have been negotiated, teams are expected to abide by the final schedule. For more information on scheduling guidelines including double headers please see rule 502 in the League Rules.
vi. Referees: each team is responsible for scheduling referees for their home games, a center referee and two assistant referees are required for U-11 to U-19. A center referee is required for U-8 to U-10. A list of referee associations by area and a link to the website can be found on our website.
B. Team Information:
i. The PSPL will post a club directory. Independent teams will be included in the club directory. It is the responsibility of the administrators of the club or team to keep all the information in the directory current. General contact information, and contact information for the coaching director must be listed.
ii. It is the responsibility of the team managers and coaches to keep current contact information on team pages including at least one phone number. Teams not having up to date contact information put their team and clubs participation in the league at risk.
C. Communication: Teams should respond to a team’s communication within 24 hours – except Sundays. It is expected that all teams will be use email as a primary source of communication.
D. PSPL Support It is not necessary to contact us unless you are not receiving communication from your opponents or you have reached an impasse. This should be rare. Please notify email@example.com of any “kicked back” email addresses.
It is expected (unless it is an emergency) that teams have enough players in their club to play regardless of injuries, illness, or players missing for various reasons. Please remember that you are allowed to use players from your club from younger teams or second teams in case you are short of players.
E. US Club Cards:
All players, coaches and team managers must have current US Club cards.
i. Managers and Coaches: must complete the risk management process through US Club. To do so visit the US Club soccer Home page www.usclubsoccer.org click on the programs tab and click on risk management tab.
ii. Players Cards: To order player cards you will need the following:
1. An electronic copy of each player’s birth certificate, preferably in pdf form. Passports are also valid
2. A digital photo of each player. This is not required but is much easier then attaching photos to the cards later on. Jpeg is the file format of choice but they will accept other formats. Please read the instructions when ordering the cards.
3. A credit card to pay for the player cards
4. A US Club team account (please contact your club registrar if you do not have one)
5. To order the cards log into your account through the US Club website. Click on the player management tab and follow the instructions. There are tutorials to help one through the various steps.
F. Concussion Compliance – Each player and parent must read and sign the Concussion Compliance document found on the PSPL website. The team manager must collect and hold onto the documents for the team records. This needs to be updated each year.
H. INDEPENDENT TEAM REGISTRATION
If your team is an independent team and is not currently part of US Club Soccer, your team will need to register as an independent team through US Club. In the process, your team needs to choose the Puget Sound Premier league as the League your team will be playing in. Once that request is submitted to the PSPL, league officials will review the request. If approved, team will receive notification from US Club. US Club will then send you account information.
VI. ADDITIONAL RESOURCES