Policies & Guildelines
“ Players Come First”
Before making a commitment to join any club, both the player and parents should take into consideration all the factors involved, including expectations from the player and parents. Go Premier Soccer (GPS) has no desire to write rules covering every situation or possible problem that may arise, however we expect players and parents to follow these club policies and behave in a way the that positively reflects the team and Go Premier Soccer. By either accepting the GPS offer of a spot in an age group or signing the Player Agreement, players and parents agree:
- GPS may take disciplinary action when there club policies are violated, and
- They will abide by the club’s decisions regarding disciplinary sanctions.
The player evaluation, offer and acceptance process works best when everyone involved is open honest and ethical. GPS coaches are expected to adhere to these standards and we ask parents act the same way.
- Each team is re-selected every year
- Players are evaluated based on dimensions that may not be apparent to the bystander, including technical skill, tactical awareness, physical attributes, work rate, character, mentality, and fit within a particular age group or team Evaluations is based on those factors only.
- Players will initially be placed on a team that is best suited to their performance based upon the evaluation factors above. Players may be moved from one team to another during the year based on what the age group coaches determine is best for both the teams and the player.
Current players are evaluated throughout the season during practices, scrimmages and games. If a player does not intent to return to the club, he should inform the coach as soon as that decision has been made; to be fair, coaches will tell players as soon as they have made the decision not to ask the player back.
New Player Evaluations and Tryouts
- New players are evaluated during annual tryouts, practices, scrimmages and in game situations.
- Tryouts are held annually, at the end of the spring season, and are open to all players who are eligible to play in the following fall’s U8-U18 age groups. Players may be evaluated by all the Coaches within GPS including the Club President.
- Coaches may have one or more additional tryouts after the open tryouts to narrow down their selection.
Offer and Acceptance
- GPS will honor all written offers it makes to players. We expect the same from players and parents. If you commit to GPS, other potential players will not receive offers, so please make your decision carefully.
- Any offer is for a slot in a specific age group, not for a specific team, position or a certain (or equal) amount of playing time.
- The offer is for one full “soccer year”.
- The GPS soccer year begins in August and continues through the following June.
- We expect players to remain on their team through the end of the soccer year regardless of whether they intend to play GPS in the following soccer year.
- Once accepted, players will not be cut from the age group due to their performance. However:
- Players may be moved temporarily or permanently to other teams within the club if the staff decides that such a move is in the best interest of the player and teams involved.
- Player may be sanctioned for disciplinary reasons as outlined elsewhere in this document, which could affect their ability to play or train with the club for the current soccer year.
COMMITMENT AND TRAVEL/SELECT PROGRAM CONCEPT
GPS travel and select teams are identified by colors within each age group;
- First Team: Blue
- Second Team: Yellow
- Third Team: White
The Coaches and the Club President have placed each child onto a team based on their observations of each child present at tryouts. Teams are broken down by age and skill level and assigned a to color team (blue, yellow and white). It is possible that a player may be moved to a different team based on how many of the players receiving invitations complete the registration (for example, a player initially placed on a yellow team may be moved to a blue team if one or more of the players invited to participate on the blue team declines the invitation).
Player Placement and Movement
Placement and movement is the process by which a player moves from one roster to another, based upon the player’s individual abilities, performance and coaches evaluations. At GPS, movements are made at the discretion of the Club President and Head Coach of the each team. The player’s family will be informed by email prior to the move and player spoken to at practice. We will hold a meeting at a mutually convenient time if requested. However, all decisions regarding movement are final and not considered sufficient reason to request a release from GPS. The club is loyal to players within the club first, but may be replaced by players from outside the club to another team within GPS if the other player demonstrates higher levels of ability with regards to the coach’s evaluation criteria. If you request a release, all annual financial obligations shall be fulfilled prior to the player’s release.
Depending on the needs of the teams involved, some players may be asked to play with an older age group or team. Any such arrangement will be evaluated by the coaching staff on an on going basis and is not permanent.
Expectations For Players
Make soccer your #1 priority – outside of family and school – during the school year. If this is not possible or it is apparent to your coach that this is not the case, it may affect playing time.
Players are expected to:
- Focus on soccer during training and games
- Not miss training. You can not miss practice, or practice poorly, and expect to improve
- Listen to their coach’s constructive criticism and use it to make themselves better players
- Be mature enough to get proper rest before games and always eat well
- Know the rules of the game
- Respect coach’s and teammates’ time
- When you are given a time for training or warm-ups, that is when you are expected on the field, dressed and ready to go
- Contact your team manager at the earliest time possible if you will be late/absent from training, game or other team activity. Team Managers will contact coaches
- Be prepared
- Training: players are expected to train in a club-training shirt (practice jersey) and bring a ball and water to every training session.
- Games: you should have all necessary game items in your bag, which will stay in the technical area during games. This includes uniform(s), water or sports drinks.
- All players must have the complete uniform (team jersey, team shorts and team socks) for all games.
- Stay with your team during training and games
- Remain with your coach and team from the start of warm-ups until released by the coach after the game or practice. This includes half time. Do not visit your parents, friends, family, or pets. If you are subbed during a game, remain in the technical area with the coach – the coach may need to make a quick substitution or an important coaching point.
- If there is an important need to leave the area, you should ask the coach for permission.
- If you are in between games, you should assume that the coach wants the team to stay together unless he or she tells you that you are free to do what you want.
- Represent your team and club positively
- Have a positive and supportive attitude within the team, regardless of playing time or position. Put the team ahead of yourself.
- Demonstrate sportsmanship and fair play in your words and actions. Keep your emotions under control and do not treat opponents, referees, or anyone else disrespectfully.
- Excessive red cards will be grounds for disciplinary action.
- Help the club and the community
- Leave the field and sidelines cleaner that you found it at all practices and games. That means that you clean up after yourself, your team, and, if necessary, other teams.
- Social Media: Players are advised that publishing comments or opinions about GPS, other competitive clubs, officials, or fellow members in any social media forum is not endorsed by the club, and could potentially lead to the expulsion of member/s if the breach is considered significant.
- Disregarding the above may result in discipline by the coach. Serious or recurring problems will be referred to the President of GPS.
Playing as a Guest Player on Another Team
- Within the club: players may be asked by other GPS teams to be a guest player at a league game or tournament. Coaches normally check with each other before asking the player, but the player or parents should still confirm with their own coach that this is OK and doesn’t create any problems for the player’s “primary” team.
- Outside the club: If you are asked to be a guest player by a team at another club for non-league play such as a tournament, you must have permission from the Club President. GPS strongly recommends that you discuss this with your coach before approaching the Club President for permission.
Expectations for Parents
- As a parent, you must commit to supporting your child's participation in team and club functions.
- Please familiarize yourself with the rest of this document, especially:
o the “Expectations for Players” section above – please besure your and your child understand it.
o the “Communicating and Resolving Issues With Your Coach” section below.
- the “Game Day Behavior by Players, Parents and Spectators” section
- The parent/guardian is responsible for arranging player transportation to and from training, games and other team or club events.
- In the event of an overnight trip or tournament, all team members may be required to stay at a designated hotel and eat meals as a team. Players’ family members will always be invited to stay at the designated hotel and may be invited to join the team during team meals. Final decisions regarding team travel, including timing of arrival and departure to and from locations (hotels, restaurants, game fields etc) are the responsibility of the team manager or coach.
GPS charges dues that primarily pay for coaching management, coach compensation, league fees, tournament entries and practice field rentals. However, there are other costs that keep the club running. GPS may require parents to do periodic fundraising efforts in order to lower parents’ out-of-pocket costs and to assist families who need financial assistance.
COMMUNICATING AND RESOLVING ISSUES WITH YOUR COACH
Parents should feel free to arrange meetings with their child’s coach. As players mature, they are expected to try to resolve issues between themselves and their coach without parental intervention.
Guidelines and policies regarding these discussions:
- Keep the meeting focused on the player
- Good topics: the player
- what a player might or can do differently to earn more playing time (keeping in mind that, as noted above, there are no guarantees with respect to position or a specific or minimum amount of playing time in games).
- problems that may affect the player’s training or game performance
- problems they might have with other players on the team
- injuries or other health concerns
- other issues concerning the player
- Bad topics: coaching decisions or other players on the team
- positions you think certain players should play
- playing time in the past
- your opinions about other players
- team formations
- Talk to the right person
- If you have an issue that should be discussed with the coach, bring it to them – and not other parents or the team manager. Don't burden the manager, whose role is team administration, with issues that are properly the coach's.
- Players and parents should recognize that it is always best to resolve issues directly with the coach..
- When to meet
- Please defer to the coach’s wishes about what times, places, and means of communication are appropriate. Immediately before, during or after a game, or during a practice, is not the appropriate time. Many coaches do not want to have parent conferences on game days, and may also ask that parents cool off for 24 hours before discussing an issue that arose in a game. Each coach should communicate their preferences to the parents at a team meeting, and parents should respect those wishes.
- Please respect your coach’s time
- The coach has a limited amount of time to allocate to each of their players and each of their teams. Parents are asked to respect their coach’s time and not take up a disproportionate amount of it compared to other parents and players, or to keep revisiting the same topics. While the club expects coaches to respond promptly and professionally to a reasonable level of parent communication, a coach may limit their responses or take other action if they feel that a parent is placing undue requirements on their time.
GAME DAY BEHAVIOR BY PLAYERS, PARENTS AND SPECTATORS
Parents and other spectators are expected to:
- Provide a positive environment for teaching the game
- Understand that team and player development will be given a greater priority over winning
We know other clubs may not have or observe these standards for their players, coaches, parents or supporters, but we strive to be different.
All club members, both players and parents, must conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with a healthy team and game environment.
- There will be no coaching by parents and/or spectators. Feel free to be supportive, but do NOT provide any type of instruction ("pressure," "shoot," "wide," and so on). Although you may think you are helping, it is probably counter-productive to the players and is definitely disrespectful to the coach. Your coach may be looking for a more composed choice in that moment, want the player to learn by making their own decision, or use choices taught in practice. Please trust the staff.
- Never direct a disparaging comment at a player, coach, referee, parent or supporter. The best policy is to acknowledge positive play and otherwise keep quiet.
- Never get into a confrontation with anyone.
- Do not complain to officials. Our players need to learn to overcome adverse calls and foul play or gamesmanship by other teams – they are part of soccer – and we expect our parents to do the same. Parents yelling at referees sets a poor example and can swing calls against our teams.
- Any parent who is disruptive and / or abusive to players, opponents, GPS or opposing coaches, opposing spectators, field staff, or referees, or who in any way brings dishonor to the GPS, may be prohibited from attending games.
Give the coach room and time to work
- If spectators are on the same sideline as the team, only players and coaches should be in the "technical area," which extends ten yards in both directions from the midfield line. Players should stay with their teammates inside the technical area (or on the field) and spectators should be outside that area. This gives the coach room to do their job and focus on the game and the players.
- The coaches are teachers and the field is their classroom and their workplace. If you have a question/concern about playing time, game decisions, etc., please do not approach the coach during a tournament, game, or practice. See “Communicating and Resolving Issues With Your Coach” above.
Please follow field rules and don't leave a mess
- Please read and adhere to all rules about fields – whether posted at the field or on the league or club websites. See the "Taking Care of Our Fields" section for more.
- Please help clean up after your team after all games (and the other team, if it's ahome game).
TAKING CARE OF OUR FIELDS AND EQUIPMENT
If we don’t take good care of our fields, we won’t be allowed to use them. Please leave every facility in better shape than you found it.
- Pick up all trash after every game and practice – even if it’s not yours.
- Follow the rules for each facility (including parking restrictions)
- Goals and nets are expensive – don’t abuse them
- Treat field staff with respect
Coach duties and behavior
The coach is in charge of player and team development, so his or her roles include
- player selection
- training plans in line with the club’s curriculum
- game day team selection, playing time, player positioning, tactics and strategy
- team behavior
The coach’s decisions about the above are final.
Coaches are expected to behave professionally; they will
- communicate openly and honestly with players and parents
- be consistent in their treatment of players
- not use foul language or act abusively
- be prepared for all training and games, and arrange a substitute when there is a conflict
- will return phone calls, texts and emails within 24-48 hours
INTIAL TEAM MEETING
- Coaches should have a team meeting early in the season where they discuss their expectations of players, parents and themselves
- Review policies involving players and parents
- Let parents know how best to communicate with them
- Outline the schedule for the year
- Review other team matters
If a coach is involved in outside activities such as private training or coaching school teams, a player’s participation or non-participation in those activities shall in no way impact GPS team selections, playing time, position assignment, discipline or any other aspect of the player’s GPS soccer experience.
Each team shall have a parent manager to handle administration. The manager can have several assistants to handle different aspects of the job. The tasks may include:
- collect necessary paperwork (Birth certificate, player photo, etc.) for league registration.
- communicate information to the team, such as practice dates and times, information from the club, etc.
- assist GPS as necessary to collect club dues from players on the team
- organize team fundraising, if applicable
- assist in registering for tournaments in coordination with club tournament schedule and coach
- handle game-day player check-in
- report scores as needed
- assist with uniform orders (although players are responsible for ordering an paying for their own uniforms)
- organize team volunteers for club events such as the tournament
- make overnight team travel arrangements, if applicable
- The manager is NOT a go-between for concerns that need to be discussed between parent and coach.
- Managers are selected by the GPS President.
CONSEQUENCES OF VIOLATING CLUB POLICIES
Types of problems
- Failure to fulfill financial commitments (to the club or to the team)
- The player may be suspended from training and/or games until their account is current or acceptable payment arrangements are made.
- Single minor violation of team or club policies
- Examples: tardiness or lack of focus in training
- This should be dealt with between the player and coach. The coach will discuss the problem with the player, in private, and give the player an opportunity to correct the problem.
- The coach may use tools such as withholding playing time in order to provide incentive for the player to fix the issue.
- Recurring minor problems
- If the player cannot fix the problem in a reasonable period of time, the coach or President of the Club will discuss the problem and the player's inability to fix it with the player's parents.
- The coach or President of the Club may institute sanctions as described below until the problem is corrected
- Major violations of club, league, or GPS policies
- Examples: verbal abuse or physical assault on a teammate, coach, opponent, referee, or spectator; recurring sideline behavior problem by parent; excessive red cards.
- The coach or the President of the Club may institute sanctions as described below
- There may be additional discipline from the league or GPS
- As noted above, this list is NOT comprehensive and some situations will require the club to craft a unique sanction.
- Players are subject to reasonable discipline at the coach or club’s discretion (running laps, writing an apology, etc.).
- Players may be suspended from training or games for a length of time commensurate with the gravity of the offense.
- Players involved in a major violation of league or GPS rules may be referred to those organizations for further discipline.
- Parents may be banned from fields during training
- Parents may be banned from fields during warm-ups, games, and post-game activities
- Parents may be subject to other reasonable rules that minimize or prevent the problematic parent behavior
If a player or parent feels that a punishment is unjust, they should discuss it with their coach or President of the Club.
Disciplinary Actions By Other Organizations
The different leagues that our teams play in and GPS each have their own disciplinary processes for significant problems such as assault on a referee or major problems between spectators. The club may support the player or team in such hearings, or abstain, depending on the results of our investigation of the incident and the severity of the proposed sanction. Any discipline handed down by those bodies is separate from any sanctions that the club imposes.
CLUB FEES, PAYMENTS AND FINANCIAL AID
- Parents will receive a current year fee schedule on the Player Agreement.
- Hiring high-quality coaches, while GPS strives to make club dues as affordable as possible, club soccer is a serious financial commitment. Club fees pay for staff compensation, league games; player and team registration expenses with league and state association.
- Club fees do not include:
- the team fees discussed in the “teams” section
- travel costs to and from games, tournaments, and other events
- required uniform and other equipment costs
- optional warm-ups and backpacks.
· pay in full
· pay over time using automatic credit card payments and the schedule on the registration website
· be on a personalized payment plan if approved by the President of the Club. A promissory note may be required as part of the approval.
Failure to pay club fees on time will result in the suspension of the player from training and games as described in "Consequences of Violating Club Policies" above. GPS (bounced) checks will incur a $25 fee and must be paid within seven days.
Refunds of club fees
Refunds of club fees are issued in only three cases:
- No Team- If a team does not have the minimum number of players required for league play by July 31, the club will make every effort to place the players on other teams in the club. If it is unable to do so, it will refund fees on a prorated basis.
- Season-ending injury- If a player suffers an injury that requires a rehabilitation period of six months or longer, club fees will be refunded on a prorated basis. A note from a medical doctor (MD) may be required.
- Player permanently moves out of the area.Club fees may be refunded on a pro-rated basis if the player permanently moves outside Montgomery County area. The club may require evidence, such as a report card from their new school, to support this.
The amount of funds the club has available for financial aid, if any, changes from year to year depending on the club budget, reserve, fundraising, and sponsorship income. The club must first be able to pay its expenses plus maintain a sufficient reserve before the club can offer any financial aid.
Club Management and Organization
Go Premier Leadership is comprised of the following members:
Phone: (301) 760-9981
Phone: (240) 418-1364