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Mainland United Soccer

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TRAVEL SOCCER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 
 

FAQ: Player Development, MUSA Philosophy (click links below)

What is the philosophy of MUSA?

FAQ: Tryouts - Team Skills Evaluation (click links below)

Who is eligible to try-out for a team?  Is MUSA an open club?

What do you need to try out for a MUSA travel soccer team?

When are tryouts held by MUSA Travel Soccer?

Does my child have to attend both days of tryouts?

Is my child at risk of not being selected for a team?

How many players are on a team?

FAQ: Age Groups- US Soccer Changes (click links below)

How are age groups determined?

My child won’t be with her current teammates any more. Can’t they all stay together?

Does my child have to play in his age group or can he play up or down or with his friends ?

It appears my child is being pushed up two age groups.  Is that correct?

My child will be on a team made up of a mix of 8th graders and 9th graders.  9th graders play high school soccer in the fall and my child is an 8th grader.  Who will my son play with in the fall?

FAQ: Travel Soccer (click links below)

Why Travel?

What is the time commitment required to play travel soccer?

What does it cost?

What league does MUSA participate in?

When are practice sessions?

Who is responsible for training the players?

Who pays the trainers?

When are games held?

Where are games held?

Does MUSA participate in tournaments?

 FAQ: Registration, Travel Soccer (click links below)

What is required to register my player?

What are the registration fees?

Are there scholarships available?

What is the registration schedule?

Can registration fees be refunded?

 FAQ: Player/Parent Responsibility (click here)

What are the roles of the parent volunteers?

What uniform items are required for my player?

What personal equipment is required for my player?


What is the philosophy of MUSA?


The mission and goal of MUSA is to develop skillful and ultimately competitive youth teams by providing youths the opportunity to excel at soccer and to build positive character and promote principles of fair play by providing an enjoyable, fair and high quality soccer program. MUSA emphasizes player development for better players in the future over immediate ‘winning tactics’. The Club emphasizes a healthy parent involvement in youth sports.

Who is eligible to try-out for a team?  Is MUSA an open club?

MUSA Travel Soccer tryouts are open to all area youth. There is minimum age requirement. Your player must be born in 2009 or before to play on a travel team.  If your player does not currently play for a MUSA Travel Soccer team we require a copy of your players birth certificate, that we may keep for our files.

What do you need to try out for a MUSA travel soccer team?

Register on the club website at www.mainlandunitedsoccer.com.  Registering online will complete the waiver to participate in the try out.  Check the schedule for your players age group for the date and time of the tryout. Please arrive at least 20 minutes prior to tryout time, so that you have time to check in.  Player should wear a plain white or mostly white shirt, shorts, cleats, and shin guards.  No MUSA club jerseys should be worn to tryouts.  Players should bring a ball and water bottle.  Player numbers will be provided and should be pinned  to the front of the shorts so that they are visible and not covered by pinnies during drills.  If your player is new to MUSA, bring a copy of the child's birth certificate to verify that your child is at the correct tryout.

When are tryouts held by MUSA Travel Soccer?

MUSA holds general tryouts for all existing and new teams in May. Players are assigned to teams for the following fall/spring soccer year based on their ability to play the game. If players have improved sufficiently over the course of the fall season there is the chance that they can be moved up to the next level of play and some teams may have November tryouts to make these evaluations. Teams are arranged in an effort to optimally place & group players for their development.  Our tryout schedule can be found on the Travel Soccer tab at the top of our home page or it can be found here.

Does my child have to attend both days of tryouts?

Your child must attend at least one day of tryouts to guarantee a position on one of our travel teams.  MUSA is cognizant that conflicts may arise that prevent your child from attending both days of tryouts, but attendance at both days of tryouts gives your child the best opportunity to be evaluated and placed with players of similar skill level.

Is my child at risk of not being selected for a team?

MUSA believes it is important to find a team for all our players to play.  On average, we have over 20 teams with skill levels that vary greatly. However, sometimes the number of players dictates the number of teams that we can put on the field, and we can’t always accommodate each player at the travel level. Our travel program has limited availability for “out-of-town” players – sometimes this is needed to obtain certain competitive levels, and sometimes this is needed just to field teams. 

Every spring, the program directors conduct a series of “tryouts” to select players for their appropriate teams. These teams will be formed for the following soccer season (both fall and spring). Each player is rated by an independent evaluator, and based on those evaluations and evaluations from our coaches, the teams are formed. Again, we make every effort to find a team for each Linwood, Northfield and Somers Point resident attending tryouts.  In some situations, your child may not placed on a travel team, he or she will still have the ability to play in our recreation program. 

How many players are on a team?

The NJYS, US Soccer and SJSL as well as other leagues that we play in determine the number of players required for each team. Age groups U13 and up all play with 11 players on the field at one time, this is known as 11v11, while U11 and U12 play 9v9, U10 and below play 7v7. The current team size requirements are listed below:

U13 & above: 11v11; 22 max, recommended 16

U11 & U12: 9v9; 18 max., recommended 12 

U10 & under: 7v7., 14 max, recommended 10

How are age groups determined?

In 2015 US Soccer adopted rules to determine soccer age groups by birth year.  Soon after US Soccer adopted the age changes New Jersey Youth Soccer followed suit as did the leagues that our club participates in.  NJYS and the soccer leagues have made rule changes to allow for a smooth transition into these new age groups.  MUSA board of directors has reviewed these changes and in late 2015 made a presentation at a monthly board meeting and adopted the following age groups for the 2016-17 soccer year to ease the transition into the new age groups mandated by US Soccer.

US Soccer age chart can be found here
MUSA plan for Age Group Changes

My child won’t be with her current teammates any more. Can’t they all stay together?  

MUSA is a competitive club and holds open tryouts yearly. There is never a guarantee that all players on a current team will “stay together” from one year to the next. Our goal always has been, and will continue to be, to form teams of similar levels of ability to play against other teams of similar ability. This approach maximizes both player development and the overall player experience. 

Does my child have to play with his age group or can he play up or down or with his friends?

For the 2017-18 season all players must play age appropriate according to birth year in order to continue with the new age groups.  In certain circumstances siblings may be allowed to play up in order to reduce hardship on the family but this will be a board decision and only considered if the younger sibling has equal or better skill level as the older sibling's teammates.

In the U8-U12 age groups, players are allowed by NJYS/SJSL rules to play up but in an effort to have a competitive club in all age groups playing up will be the exception rather than the rule.  Thus, we will NOT allow kids that are young for their grade (e.g., have August or September birthdays) to play with their classmates. If your son or daughter is unusually large or unusually skilled for his or her age, he or she may be able to "play up". Such decisions are made with the approval of MUSA Travel Director.  We feel that our club is large enough that we offer teams with a variety of skill levels from the most skilled to the new comer at all age groups and there is no need for players to play up.

Unlike the other age groups, there is a minimum age for U8. U8 teams do not permit players who are younger than U8 to play on them.

It appears my child is being pushed up two age groups.  Is that correct?

Although it appears that your child has “skipped” a soccer year, the naming convention that US Soccer uses has changed from the age at the beginning of the season to the age at the end of the season.  Ultimately your child will play primarily with players born in the same calendar year. Depending on the month they were born, the new mandate may initially benefit players (one of the older players on their new team) or challenge them (one of the youngest players). But both effects are short term as it will all even out physically and mentally as players get to the high school age groups.

My child will be on a team made up of a mix of 8th graders and 9th graders.  9th graders play high school soccer in the fall and my child is an 8th grader.  Who will my son play with in the fall?

Mainland High School has discontinued its freshman soccer team thus 9th graders will be looking for a team to join.  MUSA will combine the 8th and 9th graders to play in a fall and spring soccer league on a U15 team.  9th graders born in October, Novermber, and December will be to old for this team.

Why Travel?

Like the school academic testing, we compete against other teams, to exercise our team's strengths and weaknesses, player by player and to provide our players the opportunity to grow...regardless of the score. We are always seeking to play someone better to improve ourselves.

 “Nothing average ever stood as a monument to progress. When progress is looking for a partner it doesn't turn to those who believe they are only average. It turns instead to those who are forever searching and striving to become the best they possibly can. If we seek the average level we cannot hope to achieve a high level of success. Our only hope is to avoid being a failure.”  -A. Lou Vickery quotes (Trainer/Pro Baseball Player/Author)

What is the time commitment required to play travel soccer?

About 10 hours per week.

What league does MUSA participate in?

MUSA Travel Soccer participates in the South Jersey Soccer League (SJSL)South Jersey Girls Soccer League (SJGSL) as a member of New Jersey Youth Soccer (NJYS).  MUSA has become an academy level soccer club with teams also participating in Eastern Development Program (EDP), and  Jersey Area Girls Soccer (JAGS) and State Cup teams.

What does it cost?

MUSA prides itself on keeping the cost of soccer affordable.  We try to provide academy level soccer at recreation soccer prices.  Costs for an entire calendar year are $300 ($200 for the first season of the year and $100 for the second season of the year that the player participates) for ages U8 to U10 and $350 ($225 for the first season of the year and $125 for the second season of the year that the player participates) for ages U11 to U15.  Players outside Somers Point, Linwood, and Northfield are charged an additional $50 per calendar year.  The fees pay the player card fee which includes the insurance, league fees, referee fees, the professional training fees, tournaments, expenses MUSA incurs to equip teams, expenses for field maintenance, etc. Each player is responsible for their uniform kit (2 jerseys, shorts & socks - $75) and player equipment (ball, cleats, shin guards, and water bottle).

When are practice sessions?


Practice sessions are scheduled after school during the week. They are played on fields at All Wars Memorial Park fields (Linwood), Northfield Middle School (Northfield), or Fehle Field (Somers Point). When scheduling practice sessions, coaches do try to take into account the normal conflicts for each age group (for example, middle school aged players will not have practice sessions scheduled immediately after school so that conflicts with modified sports practices can be reduced). Practice session schedules are usually available just prior to the beginning of the season.

Who is responsible for training the players?

Team coaches run the practice sessions and game days. In addition, MUSA offers professional training by certified staff and will work with teams to provide trainers for our teams. Each team that wants a trainer is able to obtain one provided that it fits within the team budget.

Who pays the trainers?

MUSA pays the professional training fees for each team from the seasonal registration fees collected at the beginning of each season. The club website and  team manager are usually charged with keeping track of the fees due and collecting each player’s share.

When are games held?

Games are held each Saturday and Sunday during the season unless there is a holiday. There are usually 10 games/season. The time of the games changes weekly but generally games do not start until early afternoon and games for girls are typically on Saturday afternoons and for boys on Sunday afternoons (12:30 PM, 2:00 PM or 3:30 PM). Players are expected to attend games. Game schedules are available from each team coach or the league website just prior to the beginning of the season and are subject to change.  The season typically starts the weekend after Labor Day and ends before Thanksgiving, then starts up again the first week of March and ends around Memorial Day.

Where are games held?

Games are played both at home and away. The SJSL tries to balance the number of home and away games by team. There are usually 10 games/season.

Games are typically, within one (1) hour driving time of Linwood; in nearby locales, adjacent counties, mostly highway driving.

Does MUSA participate in tournaments?

The decision of MUSA teams to participate in tournaments is determined on a team‐by‐team basis, typically, at the team level. Tournaments are typically on weekends, a lot are on 3-day holiday weekends, and each team selects their tournament. Fees associated with Tournament registration is coordinated at the team level. MUSA, as part of the seasonal registration fee, provides teams with budgets for selecting tournaments.

What is required to register my player?

Required Paperwork for players NEW to the Travel League (players new to the team)

  1. Create an account on MUSA website and register for tryouts 
  2. Complete NJYS carding process by following this link.  Create an account and then register the player.  You will need to provide health insurance information, upload an electronic version of the child's birth certificate (it can be a photo), and add a digital head shot photo.
  3. Pay MUSA fees online through your account page.  This may require clicking the white and red "Accept/Decline" button under your childs name on your account page on the MUSA website
  4. Submit COMPLETED MUSA Uniform Sizing Worksheet  
    1. when sizing your player allow for a full school year, Fall & Spring seasons or maybe multiple year
    2. include a uniform number on the form - number is assigned by the coach.  Available numbers can be found in coaches corner.

Are there scholarships available?

Yes.  On our homepage at the bottom of the page is a link to the scholarship application form.  We are a volunteer organization so offers to complete volunteer services weigh in the decision to award scholarships.

What is the registration schedule?

Generally, the registration cycle follows this pattern:

April

Tryout sign ups

May

Tryouts, Team assignments made

June 1

Player payments for fall season are due

June 15

Fall League registration due, which is completed by MUSA

July, 1st week

Fall League payments due and are paid by MUSA out of player registration fees.

August, 1st week

season games schedule published

August, last week

practice schedules complete

September, 1st week

Sunday 1st game (boys games are scheduled for Sunday afternoons, girls games are scheduled for Saturday afternoons)

November, last week

Fall season concludes

December 1

Player payments for spring season are due

Futsal/Indoor soccer team register complete

January, 1st week

Spring League payments due and are paid by MUSA

February, 1st week

season games schedule published

February, 2nd week

practice schedules published

March, 1st week

Sunday 1st game (boys games are scheduled for Sunday afternoons, girls games are scheduled for Saturday afternoons)


Can registration fees be refunded?

MUSA operates on a strict NO REFUND POLICY, except in the case of a season-ending injury.  Fees are collected in advance due to the fact that many of our expenses associated with our programs go towards league fees which are committed to well in advance of the games being played.  Payments secure a roster spot and also allow for MUSA to register for leagues based on that commitment.  Withdrawing from a team after making a financial commitment to play on a team may impact the ability for a team to field enough players or play at the level of competition that they were registered.  Payment to the club commits the player to the club.  This also means that the player must obtain a release from the club or the player will not be able to be carded or play with another club.  By committing to the club with a financial payment, you accept that in order to obtain your release from the club all fees must be paid for the entire fall and spring seasons.


What are the roles of the parent volunteers?

Each MUSA team has a head coach, possibly a manager and several assistant coaches who are parent volunteers. The head coach takes primary responsibility for organizing team matters and setting the culture of the team. The manager assists with collection of training fees, sending out notices of game and practice changes and assisting with game rescheduling, among other things. The assistant coaches can substitute for the head coach on both practice days and game days when he or she is unavailable. Coaches must take the NJ Youth Soccer training course, 'F' license, and the concussion online course. Assistant coaches can and should attend all practice/training sessions to assist and/or observe.

What uniform items are required for my player?

Each player placed on a Travel team is responsible for obtaining their own player uniform kit (HOME jersey, AWAY jersey, shorts, socks). Players on a team are required to match as per NJYS rules; uniforms are strictly enforced.  Uniforms are purchased through soccer.com at this link.  You must first be assigned a jersey number by your coach before you can order.  During colder weather players can wear long sleeve shirts that match the jersey color.  Winter hats are permitted.  Players should never wear watches, necklaces, rings, etc. during practices and games.

What personal equipment is required for my player?

Each player placed on a Travel team is responsible for obtaining  and bringing to every practice and game their own player equipment (water, #4 ball U12 and under, #5 ball U13 and older, soccer cleats, shin guards, cold weather items, snack items). 

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Mainland United Soccer Association

All Wars Memorial Park, 1210 Wabash Avenue
Linwood, New Jersey 08221


Email : [email protected]
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