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Charlotte Independence SC FAQ

By Independence SC Staff, 04/23/19, 11:30AM EDT


Answers for parents and players joining the Independence SC family

Why is this merger happening?

One of the main reasons behind the merger is to provide opportunities for all players to have access to greater development and programming options than if the three clubs would remain independent.  These benefits can be seen across the board in recreation programs, state league teams and NPL, ECNL and DA teams. The player experience is the most important aspect behind the new club design.

We believe our coaches and staff directly impact our player experience.  Not only will this merger help to attract and retain top level staff, but it also provides better education and development opportunities. With a better educated staff, players directly benefit in their interactions and overall experience.  

In addition to increased coaching and staff education, combining the three organizations creates cost-cutting measures and better allocation of administrative roles. With staff being able to focus more on their specialty, they are able to perform a higher quality task for our families. The savings from these efficiencies in job responsibilities can be reinvested back into the organization.

Additionally, with a larger club and combined resources, we have more opportunity for in house programming which decreases travel and provides more control on player experience with the goal of limiting external expenses for our families.

Another benefit of the combined club is the potential to create resources to undertake strategic projects in the future ranging from development of playing facilities and complexes, to providing more scholarships to give greater access to the game for our players.

As you can see, the common theme behind the reasons all come back to our players’ experiences and the benefits derived from the merger.

How will tryouts work this year?

If your player is interested in trying out for a national level program (DA/ECNL/NPL), find the correct location for you and register for tryouts through that location.

If your player is not trying out for a national level program (DA/ ECNL/NPL), the tryout process will remain the same as previous years at each location. Go to your club’s website and register for tryouts as you normally would.

What does this mean for rising U16+ girls?

Because of the fact that all senior girls teams (rising U16+) have held tryouts and been formed, we will not be reshuffling these team’s makeups. This would not be fair to players who have committed to spots on various teams.

Local teams (playing in state leagues) will see no change in terms of their training/playing locations and their fees. Senior girls players already committed to playing on National Level teams (ECNL, NPL) will not see any change in terms of their rosters or fees. These teams will, however, be managed and coached as Charlotte Independence Soccer Club teams. These teams will be “regional” teams in terms of training with North teams training in Mooresville and Cornelius and South teams training in Fort Mill and Matthews. 

For more information, please review our Programs.  

Do I have to buy new uniforms? 

Yes. We are excited to share that our club leadership was able to secure a top of the line Adidas uniform kit for all players at a significantly discounted price. The new uniform set includes a white kit and blue kit branded with the Charlotte Independence logo. In addition, each player will receive a training top directly from their legacy club. Due to the size of our new club, the strength of our collective partnerships and significant support from, Adidas and Charlotte Independence, this transitional uniform kit will be a minimal cost to our families.

We realize purchasing a new uniform, especially for those who purchased last year, can cause some frustration and we completely understand. We evaluated several options to limit the impact on our families because you all are our priority, so we are excited to have the ability to get all three clubs branded in Charlotte Independence Soccer Club gear at a low price point.

That being said, we know this may be a stretch for some families, so we will have financial assistance for those families. More information on uniform ordering and low-cost pricing will be released as it becomes available.

Are my fees going to change? 

As with any new soccer year, fees are determined and adjusted by varying factors including number of training nights, field rental, referee dues, league fees, and what is included in the program. The previous approach to setting fees will remain in place. The long term goal is to provide reasonable and affordable programs for all players.

What are the national-level options (DA, ECNL, NPL) for my child with Charlotte Independence Soccer Club?

All national-level programs (Development Academy, ECNL, NPL) will be run under the central management of Charlotte Independence Soccer Club. Teams (excluding senior girls) will have open identification sessions for all players who are interested in being considered for one of or more of these teams. Players should first sign up for tryouts at their HOME location, and then may attend any ID session that they are gender and age appropriate for.

National program teams will be either regionalized or club-wide. Regionalized teams will be hosted in the North (training in Mooresville and Cornelius) or hosted in the South (training in Fort Mill and Matthews). Club-wide programs will occur throughout the greater Charlotte area.

The U13 and U14 Boys Development Academy teams will be regionalized – with a North and South team for each age group.

The U15 – U19 Boys Development Academy will be hosted club-wide.

The U13 – U19 Girls and Boys ECNL teams will be regionalized with a North and South team for each age and gender.

The U13 – U19 Girls NPL teams will be regionalized also with both a North and South teams for each age and gender. There will only be North regional teams for Boys NPL.

The Independence North location will have girls ECNL, girls NPL, boys DA, boys ECNL, and boys NPL.

The Independence South location will have girls NPL, boys DA and boys ECNL.

What type of programming will the new club have to offer?

The new Charlotte Independence Soccer Club is dedicated to the development of the sport of soccer from the youth player through adult levels and building the best soccer club for Charlotte. We offer a number of programs that suit a variety of players, from the elite level athlete to the recreational player.

Boys Player Pathway

Girls Player Pathway

The new club will have players from different states. Will my South Carolina child have to play in a North Carolina league of vice versa? 

If your child plays in a state league (NCYSA or SCYSA), you will continue playing for the state league you previously played for, unless you choose to move to a different team/location. The national programming does not play in a state league, so the player’s home state is not relevant.

What is the plan for State/Local programs in 2019-20, then 2020-21?

One of our goals is to maintain and even strengthen the local programming around the Charlotte area. It is our mission to provide a quality training platform and playing environment as locally as possible for players, while also offering full access to a complete payer pathway to all players.

In the 2019-2020 season, there will be NO changes to local programming. Lake Norman Soccer Club, Carolina Rapids and Discoveries will continue to operate local programming as scheduled. Teams will compete in local state leagues. Previously scheduled club fees will remain in place. Coaching staffs will remain as slated. Teams will train and play at the locations traditionally associated with their local programs.

In the 2020-2021 season and beyond, programming for local teams will be brought under the umbrella of Charlotte Independence Soccer Club management and administration; this will allow us to provide greater consistency and an even higher level of quality throughout the new club. But, the local nature of these programs will not change – players will not be asked to travel to other areas for locally based teams, etc.

What changes may be implemented in the youth academy programs?

The Youth Academy (U8 – U10) will be run locally as has traditionally been the case. With seven locations within the Charlotte Independence Soccer Club, however, teams will primarily compete between the various locations. This will cut down on costs and travel but also allow for a more consistent and controlled level of competition.

In year two, standardization throughout the Youth academy will become much more prevalent. This includes cost structure, standards and soccer philosophy. Youth academies will remain at the local level with local directors and coaches.

Will there be a new website?

The three clubs will continue to host their individual websites while we transition over to one website for the whole club. For up to date information on the new club, parents will use this website, but for any location-specific programming questions, parents will use the specific legacy club’s website.

How will this merger affect my child's recreation program? 

All recreation programs will remain the same as in previous years.

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