GREATER FORT LAUDERDALE SOCCER

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SOUTH FLORIDA UNITED YOUTH SOCCER ASSOCIATION (SFU)

In South Florida the premier boys travel soccer league is SFU.  A list of the member clubs is found on the official SFU and FYSA web sites.  Each travel soccer club offers as many teams, both boys and girls, as they can find competitive players in different age groups.   You do not join SFU individually, you first join a club and they apply to join the league.

Club tryouts are held each year around the first or second week in June there is open competition for spots on the teams within these clubs.   For ages groups permitted to compete in the FYSA State Cup tournament (U13+), open tryouts can officially begin on the Monday following the FYSA State Cup finals.  For younger age groups competing in Region Cup, open tryouts can officially begin on the Monday following the FYSA Region Cup finals.  After this two week tryout periods ends, rosters are usually finalized by the majority of clubs. It is imperative that you attend during the "open" tryout periods before the final selections are determined.  It is possible to find a team after the open tryout period but your choices narrow quickly.  Your best bet in your first year is to find a local club with a team in your child's age group.  A local club offering both girls and boys travel soccer is Fort Lauderdale Select FC.

The age groups are U9-19.  (Under 9 on Aug 1 - Under 19 on Aug 1). 

Example: 2007 Travel Soccer Age Requirements

U-9 born between 8/1/1998 and 7/31/1999 U-10 born between 8/1/1997 and 7/31/1998
U-11 born between 8/1/1996 and 7/31/1997 U-12 born between 8/1/1995 and 7/31/1996
U-13 born between 8/1/1994 and 7/31/1995 U-14 born between 8/1/1993 and 7/31/1994
U-15 born between 8/1/1992 and 7/31/1993 U-16 born between 8/1/1991 and 7/31/1992

All clubs are not created equal so check them out during their traditional season.  Attend practices and games; and just watch the coaching styles and behavior of the the club's parents.  This will assist you in determining if the club is the right fit for your child and your family.   Some clubs are well organized and have strict behavior protocols for the parents.  Ask a prospective clubs parents what are the strengths and weaknesses of the club. 

Once you join a travel club team, you will have obligations which you need to take seriously.   Attendance at all practices and games is a near must, even for the youngest age groups.  Lots of money and time has been committed to developing these clubs for the benefit of the players so do not abuse this privilege if you are fortunate to make a team.  There will be tournament travel obligations as well.  

A full years cost for a player on a U9-12 team is around $500 +/- depending on whether they attend out of area tournaments.  Older ages groups cost average $1,000 +/- excluding out of area tournaments.  Some of the best teams play a very aggressive travel tournament schedule. This can cost a family $2,500 +/-.   Financial aid is available with all clubs. 

SFU is one of the largest leagues in Florida and many of the top players began their playing career with a club from this league. Read the SFU By-laws and coaches manual for more information.

Each home club within SFU is responsible for assigning the referees to the games.  All referees must hold a United States Soccer Federation (USSF) rating of at least Grade 8 for Center Referees; and Grade 9 for Assistant Referees (Line Referees) in games U14 and below.   Referees are considered independent contractors and must remain impartial to either club.  The Florida State Referee Association (FSR) is the USSF certification body in Florida for any referee wanting to officiate travel soccer games.  Referees are assigned to games by a certified FSR Referee Assignor designated by each club.  FHSAA referees must hold FSR certification before officiating a FYSA travel soccer game.  

SFU will publish the playing rules on the official league web site.  SFU plays by USYSA rules with FYSA modifications and a few additional modifications recommended by the SFU board.  The SFU CLUB Representative is responsible for communicating the playing rules each season to the Club Referee Assignor and it is the assignor who briefs the referees. 

END OF SEASON TRAVEL COMPETITION (Region Cup, State Cup and Beyond)

REGION CUP

At the end of the Fall season beginning in March there is the FYSA Region Cup Championship for U11-19 teams competing in the four FYSA regions, A-D (Region A is South Florida).  No teams are allowed to compete in both Region Cup and State Cup (discussed below).  At Region Cup all FYSA teams are invited to compete within their region in three different competitive divisions (I-III).

  • Division I is reserved for all teams registered as a FYSA Division I team or "A" level in their respective leagues (e.g. team code 311). The winners of each region compete in the FYSA President's Cup Championship.  Champions of the FYSA President's Cup in ages U13-U17 will advance to the USYSA Region III President's Cup Championship held each summer.

  • Division II is reserved for all teams registered as a FYSA Division II team or "B" level in their respective leagues (e.g. team code 312).  The winners from each of the top brackets of the D-II region in ages U11-U16 advance to the Davis-Hackworth Cup Championship. 
     

  • Division III is exclusively for recreational teams. Winner is declared FYSA Region Cup Division III Champion.  

STATE CUP

At the end of the Fall season beginning in March there is the FYSA State Cup competition.  This is an open competition for teams U13-19 and not competing in Region Cup.  There is preliminary group play with teams advancing to the round of 16. The final four teams from the previous year are given a bye from playing each other in the initial rounds if their returning roster is at least 75% from the previous year. State Champions in the U14-19 groups will represent Florida in the USYSA Region III Southern Regional Championships leading to the USYSA National Championship competition.

Winners from the Region III Premier League (discussed above) automatically advance to the USYSA Region II Southern Regi0nal Championships regardless of how they fare in State Cup competition.

USYSA REGION III SOUTHERN REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

Winner of the State Cup championships and your Region's Premier League Champions compete in the USYSA Region III Southern Region Championship, even if they do not win their particular State Cup.

USYSA NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

Winners of each USYSA Region Championships advance to the USYSA National Championship held each summer.  The winner is the best youth "travel" team in the USA.

 

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