Essex United “Play‐Up” Policy
In an effort to provide a means for players of exceptional skill and knowledge of soccer to play at the appropriate level of the game and to challenge their physical and mental abilities in soccer and develop fully as a player, the Essex United Soccer Club provides the opportunity for these players to “play‐up” in the next available age bracket.
The standard policy of the club is: Players play within their age group. A player must satisfy the following first three (1‐3) conditions and enrollment conditions must exist as outlined in condition four (4) before the board will consider an exception to this policy.
- A player must petition the club to play in an older age group. The player will indicate why he/she feels she has the ability to play at the older age group. Then the Coach Coordinator will evaluate the player, consulting with the coaches of the two teams involved, and determine if the player should play‐up according to the player’s physical ability, the individual skills, and the mental preparation to play at an older age group.
- If the Coach Coordinator(s) feels a player has the physical ability, tactical ability, the individual skills, and the mental preparation to play at an older age group the Coach Coordinators will ask the player and his/her parent/guardian if the player would like to play up. In addition the following conditions must be met:
- The player and the player’s parent/guardian must consent to the advancement.
- The player must have the ability to be a regular contributor on the older age
- If a player’s birth date falls in a month and year where that player would be playing with a team that is made up entirely of players from a school grade below their own, they may request to play with a grade level team. In this case Age supersedes Ability when it pertains to Team Formation and the club’s policy on the formation of teams. That being said the player needs to have the skills to be a regular contributor to the team.
- If the club is in need of players to fill a team or start a team the Team Formation Committee (i.e. coach coordinators) will ask players to play up to fill that team. If the advancement is to fill a team and the younger age group team has over the roster limit, the club may allow to “protect” a core group of players. The remaining players will then be evaluated in accordance with the above criteria of physical ability, individual skills, and mental preparation to determine who or if players should be moved up.
Advancement is conditioned on the consent of the Coach Coordinator(s), the parents and the player involved. This consent is to be evident by required signatures appearing on the Play‐Up Agreement. An advancement situation will be reviewed only in the ways set forth above. The Coach Coordinators will review the abilities of the player with the two coaches involved and must find that:
- The player is not appropriately challenged at the player’s age group.
- The player may suffer setbacks if continuing to play in that age group.
- The player is mature enough to play and socialize at the older age group.
- No players will be “cut” from their age appropriate group to make room for a younger player to play up
The final factor in the decision will consider the overall skills of the player, the physical characteristics of the player, maturity of the player, and psychological effects on the player. The club will also consider what is for the overall good of the club. At the same time, the club must never lose sight of what is in the player’s best interest as an athlete and a person in the player’s development.
The decision for the player to play‐up will be made prior to the first scheduled league match if at all possible. In all decisions the final authority will reside with the Coach Coordinator(s). This policy will be evaluated yearly, and can be changed in accordance with the needs of the Essex United Soccer Club.