COE/Comp Commitment & Policies

COE & Competitive Program Commitment

(Last Updated July 15, 2018)


Center of Excellence (COE) & Competitive Program Tryout Policy

  • All current SVU players who seek a spot in the teams program for the next soccer year are required only to communicate their desire to continue with the program.
  • Placement of returning players is based strictly on historical evaluation, which includes player commitment level.
  • Prospective new players are welcome any time of the year (spring, summer, fall, winter) to participate in a trial period by attending trainings.
  • SVU also offers invited prospective new players to attend team trainings during the final month of the spring season.
  • COE and Competitive positions can be offered at any time subject to available positions.
  • COE and Competitive positions for the next soccer year will be offered at any time within the final month of the spring season. 
  • All COE and Competitive candidates will be notified at the latest by the Friday following the final weekend of spring play.
  • For the U8-U10 COE programs, offers are for inclusion in the overall teams program, not for a specific team.  At this age group training group composition and match rosters can change throughout the soccer year to provide a balanced and varied experience for all players.
  • For the U11 age group and older, offers are for inclusion within a specific team level (Blue, White, etc.). Players in these age groups may be moved between levels subject to the Directors and Parents approval.
  • Players and parents should anticipate a coaching model which could provide exposure to multiple coaches.

COE & Competitive Commitment Requirement

  • Full-year commitment from SVU is extended to all players – players will not be cut during the soccer year.  In return, a soccer-year commitment is required from the players and parents as well.  This includes a comprehensive fall and spring program.  Opting out of any aspect of this base program is not permitted.
  • U7u8 COE players however may choose to commit to the fall only, before extending their commitment to the spring.
  • Players are required to attend all training sessions and matches. Reasons/excuses must be provided for all absences.  Parents are required to communicate with the coach as to why players cannot attend.
  • Participation levels (attendance history) will be considered in roster composition, playing time and offers to continue with the teams program the following soccer year.
  • Players must arrive before all matches in time to participate in pre-match preparation activities.  The arrival time for matches will be determined by the coach.  Players and parents should expect an arrival time of 30min-1hr before kick-off time, depending on match circumstances.
  • The team commitment includes participation in a specified number of tournaments determined on a team-by-team basis.

Participation in High School Soccer

  • Grades 9-12 – SVU fully supports spring high school soccer for our players in grades 9-12.  In addition, to accommodate players with a fall school season, and players with a spring school season, SVU will do our best to field u15-u18 teams in both the fall and spring. 
  • Grade 8 – All SVU players up thru 8 th Grade are required to make a commitment to Fall and Spring participation.  The Fall/Spring commitment is no different for players who happen to be in grade 8, and therefore eligible for participation in high school JV soccer.  SVU supports our players in grade 8 who wish to ADD JV soccer to their schedule.  Sitting out of the SVU season is not an option.  Players who fail to fulfill their commitment will risk losing their “Good Standing” status.  However, SVU is willing to work with players/parents to make some accommodations to make dual-team participation feasible for 8th graders wishing to play both SVU and High School soccer. 

One-Club Concept

  • Players in the team programs (all ages) are encouraged to commit to this soccer program ONLY in order to maximize the potential of the program in a variety of ways. 
  • Confident and efficient learning takes place in an environment where rules are consistent and information is presented in a controlled and coordinated way. 
  • Physical readiness and energy levels are maintained better in a regimen that does not include high intensity activity 7 days per week.
  • Motivation is in the end the key to any program.  Well rested, committed, confident, eager players will train better, perform better on the field, and enjoy the game more.
  • Players should be able to participate in additional optional training activities (additional team training, goalkeeper training, speed & agility training, etc.), but cannot if they are over-scheduled. 
  • Participating fully in a SVU team program requires a high level of commitment and dedication will make participating in multiple soccer programs difficult.  A player’s primary commitment must be to the SVU program.

Guest Play – Participation with Clubs other than SVU

  • SVU players may have opportunities to play with other clubs in tournaments, summer leagues, foreign travel, etc.
  • SVU is enthusiastic about player taking advantage of guest playing opportunities that benefit their development and exposure.  We are happy to help facilitate this.
  • However, SVU requires outside organizations to coordinate player releases and permission through the SVU office.
  • SVU also requires all players registered with SVU COE/Comp programs to notify SVU of their guest playing opportunities.

COE & Competitive Rosters

Players/parents should not expect roster composition to change dramatically within the course of the year. However, there are some factors, which can result in changes to rosters:

  • Leagues and tournaments embracing the “Club Pass” rule will allow a number of changes to base rosters for associated matches in an ad hoc manner. SVU will utilize the rule to provide opportunities for players to play with other teams within the club, for developmental and/or supplemental purposes.
  • Tournament rosters may vary in composition from league rosters for developmental and/or supplemental purposes.

Player Promotion (Playing Up)

  • SVU is committed to making a concerted effort among the various teams to ensure that our top players have promotion opportunities with the older age groups in order to further challenge them.  We are eager to provide both training and match opportunities for players outside of their official age group who are ready for this type of experience.
  • We are also committed to making sure that our top players continue to contribute to, and have leadership opportunities with their official age group.
  • All decisions regarding “playing up” will be managed by the coaches of the teams involved, and the SVU Directors.

COE & Competitive Playing Time

  • U7-U10 Teams – All players will be provided a minimum of 50% playing time over the course of the season.  Positional rotations (see Playing Positions below) and roster size may affect the coach’s ability to provide 50% playing time in every match.
  • U11-U14 Teams – Coaches should target a minimum of 40-50% playing time for all players over the course of the season. Positional rotations (see Playing Positions below) and roster size may affect the coach’s ability to provide 50% playing time in every match
  • U15 and Older Teams - Playing time will be provided for all players, but player performance and tactical considerations will also be taken into account. The amount of playing time in league and tournament matches will be determined by the coach.

Playing Positions

  • U7-U10 Teams – All players will spend significant time over the course of each soccer year playing in all areas of the field (back, midfield and forward as deemed appropriate by the coach).  Players interested in playing in the goal are given regular opportunities to do so, but are not permitted to become full-time goalkeepers.  All players will be encouraged to spend some time trying the goalkeeper position.
  • U11-U12 Teams – Players could expect to spend some time over the course of each soccer year playing in all areas of the field (back, midfield and forward as deemed appropriate by the coach).  Players interested in focusing on the goalkeeper position are given regular opportunities to do so. 
  • U13 and Older Teams – Coaches and players are permitted to begin the process of finding positions that best fit each player’s skill set and preferences. Players interested in focusing on the goalkeeper position will be allowed to do so.

COE & CompetitiveTraining Schedule

  • All teams are expected to train twice per week during the Fall and Spring seasons. 
    • Training sessions will be 1.5 hours in duration. 
    • All players are expected to arrive at training before the scheduled start time.
    • Players are required to attend all training sessions unless excused by the coach.
  • Fall Training
    • Fall training begins Week of Aug 13, 2018
    • Regular fall team training schedules begin the week after Team Camp, continuing through the 3rd week of November, leading up to the end-of-season tournaments.
  • Winter Training
    • Winter training will be OPTIONAL and carry additional costs.
    • Winter programming begins in December/January, and ends in mid-February.
    • Winter Futsal Club tryouts are in late September.  Futsal Club has a 10-date training and match schedule.
  • Spring Training
    • Spring team training typically begins during the last week of February, continuing through the end of May, leading up to the end-of-season tournaments (Memorial Day).
  • Technical, SAQ, and Goalkeeper Training
    • Additional training session occur once per week in Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer.
    • These sessions are included in your membership during the Fall and Spring seasons. 
    • During the Winter and Summer, these sessions will carry a fee. 
    • We strongly encourage all players to attend these special sessions.
  • Summer Training
    • Summer training will be OPTIONAL and carry additional costs.
    • Summer programming begins in mid-June, and ends in early August.

COE & Competitive Match Schedule

  • Match Days
    • Matches typically occur once per week in the Fall and Spring, predominantly on Saturdays. 
    • Some matches may be played on Sundays as schedules necessitate.
    • Occasionally 2 matches are played in a given week (i.e. make-up matches, and Sat-Sun away match events).
    • For tournament events, teams will typically play 3-4 matches (Sat-Sun for most tournaments).
  • Fall Matches
    • Fall league matches start around the 3rd week of August and end around the 3rd week of November.
    • All u11-u19 teams will participate in a fall end-of-season tournament (e.g., Capital Fall Classic) – boys event 2nd week of November, girls event 3rd week of November.
    • COE groups will focus on arranged match dates with philosophically compatible opponents.
  • Winter Matches
    • Winter match play will be optional and carry additional costs.
    • Winter Futsal Club match options include Tournament and Club-to-Club match dates.
  • Spring Matches
    • Spring league matches start around the 2nd week of March and end around the 3rd week of May.
    • No matches are played the weekend of Easter Sunday.
    • All u11-u14 teams will participate in a spring end-of-season tournament (e.g., Virginia Beach Memorial Day Classic).
    • COE groups will focus on arranged match dates with philosophically compatible opponents
  • Additional Tournaments
    • Additional tournament schedules are determined at the discretion of the SVU Directors and Coaching Staff.
    • Typical additional tournaments include Labor Day, Columbus Day, and February/March tournaments.

COE & Competitive Player Evaluations

  • U7-U10 teams - Formal player evaluations are not provided for the COE u7-u10 age groups.
  • U11-U14 teams - Players will be provided 1 written evaluation per year from their coach after the completion of the Fall program.  Coaches will make themselves available to parents/players for a conference to review player progress.
  • U15-U18 teams - Players will be provided 1 written evaluation per year from their coach at the end of the Fall program.

COE & Competitive Player Commitment

Players must:

  • Be in Attendance at All Trainings and Matches
    • Players are expected to attend all programmed events for their team/group.
    • Attendance records are kept for all team programs.  Reasons/excuses must be provided for all absences.  Participation levels will be considered in roster composition, and playing time.
    • Players should target a minimum of 90% attendance level for trainings, and 100% attendance for matches.  We realize that there are at times irreconcilable conflicts that arise.  Therefore, the importance of attending whenever possible is stressed.
  • 2)     Arrive On Time to All Trainings and Matches
  • ü  Players are expected to arrive before the scheduled start time so the group can be ready to start on time.
  • ü  Coaches are expected to start all trainings and pre-match activities on time.  All players are expected to facilitate this with their timely presence.
  • 3)     Be Ready to Learn/Growth Mindset at All Trainings and Matches
  • ü  Players are expected be well-behaved, attentive, and motivated throughout all training and match events.
  • ü  Players are expected to be receptive to instruction.  Players need to learn to accept both praise and critique as integral to player and team development.

Family Commitment

The commitment level for SVU teams is significant.  Soccer is a team sport and each player’s and parent’s participation affects the experience of all members on the team.   SVU will offer the best possible soccer programs and will expect a quality level of commitment from all SVU players and parents.   Players and parents must seriously consider this commitment prior to accepting their position.


Parent /Supporter Commitment

SVU Competitive Mission:  “The SVU Competitive Program provides a venue for players to improve their skills and develop their game to the highest possible level by training and playing in a challenging and competitive environment with like-minded players.”

SVU parents play a major role in facilitating the requisite Training & Match Environment. 

Parents must:

  • Facilitate Player Attendance to all Trainings & Matches
  • Facilitate Player On-Time Arrival to all Trainings & Matches
  • Facilitate Player Readiness to Learn/Growth Mindset
  • Understand that, as a team program, SVU teams strive to win, but, of greater importance, is the development of the players and the team.
  • Be positive role models by encouraging good sportsmanship and demonstrating positive support for all players, coaches, fans and officials at all trainings and matches.
  • Support the coaches’ decisions as they relate to the players and the team.
  • Refrain from sideline coaching…this creates a chaotic and confusing soccer environment for the players (see Parent/Supporting Sideline Conduct below).
  • Respect the decisions of the officials
  • Support a player development environment which is highly structured, challenging and competitive.

Parent/Supporter Sideline Conduct

  • Vocal support from our parents and other supporters is welcomed and encouraged.
  • Coaching from parents/supporters is NOT permitted.  This includes coaching of one’s own child.  Coaching is defined as tell a player what to do (e.g., “pass it,” “shoot,” “get the ball,” etc.). If you are shouting to specific players during specific actions, it’s likely that you are coaching.
  • Supporters must allow the players to hear only one voice giving instruction, that of the coach.  They must allow the team to focus only on the topics of the day.  Supporters must also help to minimize a sense of panic on the field. 
  • Supporters must also be careful with positive and negative feedback to the players (e.g., “nice,” or “don’t do that.”)  One might say “nice” when a player kicks the ball out of bounds when they could have just passed back to the goalkeeper.  And one might say “don’t do that” when a player makes a great decision to pass back to the goalkeeper.  In both examples, the comments, although surely meant to help, are actually detrimental.
  • Some common problem areas with supporter coaching to guard against: 1) Cries of “get the ball, get it, get it” are counter to the habits of good defenders whose priority is containment over winning the ball. 2) Cheers for aimless kicks forward support the complete opposite of controlled, deliberate, thoughtful, purposeful, multi-directional soccer. 3) Specific instruction threatens to take the decision-making away from the player.
  • Supporter must not engage in negative or abusive verbal exchanges with the opposing players, opposing supporters, referees, etc.  Any problems at a match should be addressed after the match and in a formal way by the SVU Directors only.
  • Supporters must treat the facilities and facilities employees with respect.  We must abide by all facilities rules, and always remove our belongings and trash.

Failure to follow the Conduct rules may result in:

  1. A verbal and/or written warning by the coach, official, SVU Director or SVU Board member.
  2. Parent training and match suspension.
  3. Player training and match suspension.
  4. Player expulsion from the team program. 

Parents Communication Guide

Parents should expect to receive the following communication from SVU coaches and Directors:

  • Program and Coaching Philosophy
  • Expectations of players and parents
  • Schedules for trainings, matches, tournaments and other team functions

Coaches should expect the following communication from the parents:

  • Concerns regarding their child
  • Notice in advance for all absences, and late arrivals.
  • Positive support for all players, coaches and officials

It is not appropriate for parents to discuss the following with coaches:

  • Players other than their child
  • Training structure and activities
  • Tactical decisions during matches (positions, substitutions, systems, style of play, etc.)
  • Team strategy

Parents should follow the steps below to arrange discussions/meetings with coaches and/or SVU Directors:

  1. Contact the coach at an appropriate time to request a meeting.  Coaches should not be approached on match days.
  2. If you are unable to reach the coach, contact the SVU Technical Director to facilitate a meeting with the coach.
  3. If, after meeting with the coach, the issue is not resolved, contact the SVU Technical Director to request a meeting.  The Technical Director will meet together with the coach and parents to resolve the situation.
  4. If the issue is not resolved after meeting with the Technical Director, contact the SVU Executive Director to request a meeting.

Coaches Coaching Multiple Teams

SVU prides itself in having a professional coaching staff.  Coaching professionally however often means that SVU employs coaches who may be responsible for more than one team. Offering coaches multiple teams allows SVU to bring in more qualified coaches, and helps to allow the club to maintain quality across the club. 

Inevitably, schedule conflicts arise for these coaches. To mitigate these conflicts, the staff will work to ensure that conflicts are minimal.  The staff will work collectively to ensure that a qualified SVU staff member is able to cover when the team coach is unavailable.  

Team Manager’s Role

The Team Manager serves as the administrative representative for the players, parents, coach and the club.  The manager is not the coach.  If parents have questions regarding coaching decisions, they must address the coach, and/or the SVU Directors.

Payment of Fees

Upon player registration, all club members will be asked to agree to pay their full player fee.  Members that have not lived up to their financial obligations may be prohibited from participating in SVU activities.  SVU will also take necessary steps to collect outstanding fees from players who leave the club.  Families with a financial hardship can request payment plans and/or financial aid.

COE & Competitive Refunds

There are NO REFUNDS.  Due to the necessity for advanced planning of all programs, refunds will only be considered under the following extreme circumstances. 

  • Player moving from the area.
  • Severe illness or injury that prevents the player from participating for the remainder of a season.
  • Player cannot be placed on a team.

Cancellation/Postponement due to Weather

  • Advanced Cancellation/Postponement will take place only in the event of field closure.
  • Email Notification will be provided in the event of advanced cancellation/postponement.
  • Field Closure situations apply mainly to Natural Grass Facilities, as Artificial Turf Facilities are typically not closed due to rain.
  • Cancellation/Postponement due to severe weather (e.g., lightning) will generally take place at the scheduled start time for the session in question.
  • Advanced Notice of cancellation/postponement due to severe weather will not typically be provided.

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us