If you are new to modern soccer there is a lot of information and terminology you may not be familiar with. So this is a guide to help you maneuver your way through and get the best experience possible for both yourself and your player(s).
WAM United Soccer Club is comprised of members, player members, parent members, coaching members, community members and board members. All members are tasked with bringing an inspiring and educational environment to youth soccer. No matter your role with us, you are important, and your opinion matters. If you ever feel there is a member that is conflicting with the overall goal and mission of WAM United Soccer Club, please let us know.
LEVELS OF COMPETITION:
This instructional clinic is offered for children ages 3 to Grade 2 to introduce them to basic soccer skills, concepts, and rules of the game. As a group, they begin with a warm-up then participate in fun games, such as freeze tag soccer style. At the end of each session, they break up into groups of 4 or 5 players to scrimmage on small fields. Mini goals are used, and there are no goalie.
The instructional clinics take place on Saturdays mornings during our Fall and Spring seasons.
These are teams offered to help young players to get ready for and/or transition from the instructional clinic to the recreational and competitive levels. Only children eligible for the U7-U8 level can participate. Like the instructional clinic, developmental teams also focus to basic skills, concepts, and rules of the game.
Teams of up to 13 players are formed at the developmental level whereas the instructional clinic has activities geared towards a larger group of players before they break into random groups for a scrimmage.
These teams practice twice a week and play a game on the weekend, both home and away games are scheduled. All away games are within the North East District of Connecticut.
Games are played with 7 players per side, including a goalie. Teams are gender specific.
These teams are formed for players eligible for U9 and older levels. As the name implies, these teams are less focused on competition and more on pure enjoyment of the game.
Skills, concepts, and rules of the game still are developed.
Recreational teams play games on Saturdays against local teams. Approximately half of the games are played at Lions Memorial Park Soccer Fields and the other half in towns up to about 40 minutes away. The exact dates and times will be determined just before the season begins.
Recreational teams practice schedule depends on the age division and the coaches, approximately 1 1/2 hours twice a week.
Recreational teams will be formed at a given level when there are a sufficient number of players available.
Players may elect to play on a recreational team, or coaches may deem that this level of play developmentally is more appropriate than the competitive team.
No tryouts are required for this level of play.
These teams are formed with players eligible for U9 play up to U15, and girls and boys play on separate teams. Like the title implies, this is the most competitive level the WAM United Soccer Club offers and geared towards players interested in more serious competition.
Note the skills and concepts still will be introduced as needed, particularly with younger players, and children do not need to have had prior formal experience playing soccer.
All players must try out each year and will be evaluated for the appropriateness of placement either on a competitive or recreational team (see below); placement will also depend on the number of players interested in participating on competitive teams.
Competitive teams play games on Sundays against local teams. Approximately half the games are played at home at Lions Memorial Park Soccer Fields and the other half in towns up to about 40 minutes away. The exact dates and times will be determined just before the season begins.
Competitive teams also practice for about 1 1/2 hours twice a week, and this schedule is determined by coaches.
The U9 and U10 divisions will play 7v7, U11 and U12 will play 9v9, and U13 and up play 11v11.
WHAT LEVELS OF COMPETITION IS MY CHILD ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE IN?
Children ages 3 to Grade 2 can participate in the Instructional Clinic
Children whose birth year is 2015 or 2017 can participate in the Developmental League
Children whose birth year is 2012 - 2005 can participate in Recreational and Competitive Leagues.
WAM United Soccer Club promotes players participating in their own birth year age division.
Fall 2020 - Spring 2021 Age Divisions
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF TRYOUTS?
All players must try out to play in the fall or spring of any given academic year to ensure player safety and make sure that players receive appropriate instruction.
The main tryout session takes place each June (check the website for more details)
Players who try out, make, and play on a competitive team in the fall automatically will be eligible to play on the team in the spring. They do not have to try out again before the spring season.
Any player who did not play in the fall and wants to play at the competitive level in the spring must try out before the spring season begins. There may be limited spaces for new players at the competitive level, so players may need to be assigned to a recreational team.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT WAYS THAT I CAN VOLUNTEER?
WAM United Soccer Club is ALWAYS looking for volunteers! There are different levels of involvement and any level of background experienced and knowledge is welcome.
If you are interested in volunteering notify and WAM United Board Member or visit our Volunteer page on our website for more information.
HEAD AND ASSISTANT COACHES
The Head and Assistant Coaches are volunteers in charge of anything related to the training of the soccer teams. They have at least a basic understanding of the game of soccer.
The Head and Assistant Coached need to be available for all practices and games.
Main duties include but are not limited to;
Deciding on what skills and concepts need to be developed
Teaching the rules of soccer
Coaching during games
Communicating with families and WAM officials
Head coaches work out various roles with their assistants based on interests, knowledge, and experience as well as the team's needs.
All head and assistant coaches are required to undergo a background check to help ensure player safety.
The head coach is responsible for attending two coaches meetings per season to help schedule games with league-wide coaches and help in the continuation of other WAM-related issues.
Being a coach helper allows parents to be involved in instructions with a lower level of commitment compared to the head or assistant coaches. Some head and assistant coaches may need an extra pair or hands during a specific activity, and you are encouraged to contact your child's coaches to see if they need this type of assistance.
Coach helpers provide more individualized support for players on a needed basis.
Volunteers can participate whenever they are available and teams need the extra pairs of hands.
Any level of soccer knowledge and skills are welcome.
Note that the league requires anyone serving in a coaching-type role to go through a background check before starting to help.
Parents also can volunteer to help coordinate team activities. Please contact your child's coach to inquire about the specific kinds of ways you may be able to help. These may include:
Taking and gathering electronic pictures of players needing new player passes
Looking up directions for away games and sending them to the head coach
Signing up families to bring halftime drinks and snacks for each game