USASA to institute new standards

Standards would ascribe a tier to each amateur league

The USASA oversees adult amateur soccer across the nation. (Photo credit: USASA)

While the NASL is fighting to abolish professional league standards (PLS), the organization overseeing amateur soccer in the country — the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) — is about to institute a new set of standards of its own. Standards facilitating a tiered system that would sequester leagues into Tier 1, 2 or 3.

Soc Takes spoke to USASA chairman John Motta about the plan. “This tier system will break groups up into national, regional and local leagues. We also want to get all the amateur leagues together in January at the coaches’ meeting to discuss the possibility of promotion-relegation across the tiers.” Motta explained that the tiered system is already being drafted for “hopefully 2018” while the promotion/relegation component would take much more planning and debate.

According to Motta, under the new system national leagues such as NPSL, PDL and UPSL would be at the top tier, while regional leagues such as the American Premier Soccer League would populate tier two. Finally, elite amateur leagues “such as The Cosmopolitan Soccer League” would be at the third tier.

Beyond the geographical expanse of the league, tier requirements would involve stadium size, availability of locker rooms, media rooms and the ability to broadcast games. “We don’t have a finished product of the requirements yet, I have sent the leagues our current draft, but it is not a final product,” Motta explained.

Sources within NPSL, PDL and UPSL confirmed that they had received a draft of the requirements for tiers. Soc takes did not reach out to other leagues at the purported lower tiers.

While admitting that, in principle, the new tier requirements sound like US soccer’s PLS requirements, Motta points out that there are “no financial requirements.” Currently, PLS requires principal team owners in Division 1-3 leagues to have a net worth of between $10-40 million.

On the other hand, similar to yearly USSF audits determining league compliance, USASA will penalize leagues if teams do not meet requirements.

“If there’s a team that doesn’t meet requirements, the league would need to drop that team or would risk losing sanctioning.”

When asked if leagues could apply for waivers, Motta reiterated that details were being ironed out.

The USASA was founded in 1995 and comprises of over 250,000 members across its various constituents.

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Nipun divides his time between his two great loves – neuroscience and soccer. You can find him discussing both of those, as well as regular updates (pupdates) on his wonderful doggo, Octavia on Twitter. Get in touch with feedback/story suggestions at @NipunChopra7 or

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